I came across a really great post on the Snoring Dog Studio blog about a study looking into the problems with letting dogs sleep in the bed. Apparently it’s not such a great idea.
According to a story at Bloomberg Business Week:
Of the 250 zoonotic diseases — infections transmitted between animals and people — more than 100 are derived from domestic pets, said veterinarian Dr. Bruno Chomel, report co-author and professor of zoonoses at University of California School of Veterinary Medicine at Davis.
For the record, I sleep with two dogs, a cat and now the foster puppy. (The chickens sleep outside in the coop.) I’m guess I’m doomed to contract every disease known to man or beast. What a way to go. Hookworm, ringworm, roundworm, cat scratch disease, drug-resistant staph infections, meningitis and even the plague.
Yes, that plague.
To quote Lucy Van Pelt, “Get some hot water! Get some disinfectant! Get some iodine! I’ve been kissed by a dog!” (That’ll be 5 cents, please.)
Of course, all of this assumes that you don’t treat your pets for fleas, don’t wash your hands, and are generally not aware of the diseases you can pick up from your pups. Which is a valid concern. Most people don’t know, for example, that if you leave dog poop lying around in your yard, you can pass on worms to your kids, your dogs, and yes, yourself. All you need are dogs who have walked through the infected dirt to crawl around on your sheets and viola. Worms.
There. Now you know. Pick up the poop.
Dr. Peter Rabinowitz of the Yale School of Medicine says in the story that the health benefits of having pets outweigh the risks. Lower blood pressure, reduced stress, and a generally happier well-being.
So if I go from the plague, at least I’ll be happy about it.