If you have a pet cat at home or even a stray one you like to feed and pet, there is a risk that you might get infected. But there is no need to panic. As long as you practice good hygiene and take some basic precautions, you can avoid contracting any viral disease from petting a cat or any other pet for that matter. Simple things like handling the cat litter box with gloves or giving your cat a regular bath can help to prevent any viral infection. This article discusses some practical and effective ways to minimize such harm.
Firstly, it is important to understand that cats do transmit viral diseases to people. This happens when cats scratch your skin, bite you (playfully, of course), or lick you. Other routes are when a tick carrying an infection from a cat bite you. Cat poop lying around for a long time can also spread such infections to humans. That is why cleaning the cat litter box is so important. While healthy adults can contract infections from such sources, it is little children and the sick who are at a greater risk of catching a viral infection from a cat.
Avoid petting near the mouth
Cats are irresistibly cute and you cannot avoid the urge to pet them. You can certainly pet your cat to your heart’s desire, but keep a few things in mind. Avoid any contact with the saliva of a cat. You can do this by not petting a cat right after it has groomed itself. Avoid bringing your hand close to the mouth so that they don’t lick or bite you.
If a cat is known to bite, then it is best to avoid any actions that could encourage it to bite you. Even a little playful bite can cause the virus to enter your body and produce disease. Usually, the signs of such disease can include fever, cold and skin rashes.
Take your cat to the vet
Another thing that you must do is to get your cat vaccinated regularly. Visit your nearest vet or pet clinic with your cat and get it vaccinated regularly. This is essential for preventing the cat from catching a viral infection like rabies that it could transmit to you and other humans.
Avoid bites and scratches
It is important to beware of cat scratches as well. Cats are known to lick their paws to keep them clean because of which germs can be transferred to their claws. Any scratch can cause these germs to enter your body and affect different organs like the eyes, brain and liver.
It is important to train your cat well so that it feels comfortable around strangers and does not feel the urge to scratch or bite them. In case a cat bites or scratches you as you pet it, wash the area thoroughly with water and soap. If there is a larger wound, see your doctor immediately.
Cleaning the litter box
Coming to the most important hygiene risk—cat litter. If you don’t clean out the cat litter box frequently, your cat might become exposed to germs from the litter. The next time you want to pet your cat, these germs could get transferred to your skin and ultimately into your body.
In addition, cat litter can also infect your home, furniture and food, creating a risk for your whole family. If any person in your family is recovering from a disease or has a weak immune system for any other reason, they could experience severe effects of such infections, including diarrhoea.
So, what can you do to stay away from viral diseases when petting a cat? Well, get a vet to examine your cat is the first thing. If your cat falls sick, get them treated immediately. If you handle cat poop, remember to wash your hands with soapy water. Ask your vet to recommend a product to keep ticks and fleas away from your cat. Clean your cat regularly in case they suffer from ticks.
A cat can be a great companion bringing you love, contentment and loads of fun. Taking just a few simple steps can help you to build a loving bond with your cat without compromising your health by catching a viral infection.
Dubaipetfood is a pet services company based in Dubai and provides a wide room of extensive services for various pets including aquatics, birds, cats, dogs, amphibians, horses etc. We aim to deliver best quality products for your pet’s shelter, food, grooming, and healthcare because we understand how genuine a human-pet relationship is and will also help you make it grow stronger with our devoted services.