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Can dogs (and cats) catch illnesses from people??

1155 Views 3 Replies 4 Participants Last post by  Willowy
I feel so idiotic for posting this here, because all my life I've been told that dogs (and cats as well) cannot catch sicknesses from people, such as "colds", etc. But when I bought Little a few months back, his breeder informed me that cats and dogs can catch colds from people. She said she doesn't allow any children with runny noses/coughing/sneezing/etc. hold her puppies because they -the puppies- can get sick from it. Is that possible?!

Everything I've known and been told by a vet tells me they can't... but I guess I'm just being super paranoid right now because of the fact that I am caring for a six-month-old puppy and a four-week-old kitten who appears to have some form of sore eyes from something or another (and who is also going to have to go to the vet's for it)... and, of course, I as well have caught a cold and have been coughing and sneezing for three days. Plus, long ago a relative of mine took in a four-week-old kitten for foster care and the kitten caught some sort of respiratory condition and died... so that doesn't ease my mind either.
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There are definitely illnesses that can spread between animals and people. They're called Zoonotic illnesses. There's a big poster about it in my vet's office.
I once had a vet appointment on a day I was fighting a really bad cold... I asked him "can my dog catch a cold or the flu from me? His answer was No she cannot... but I can.

I think it really depends on what the bug in question is... like fouriscompany said google zoonotic.
As I understand it, bacterial infections CAN be spread to other species. But viral infections are generally species-specific. With exceptions, of course; for instance, ferrets can catch human colds and flu, but dogs and cats can't.
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