Some news fell on Friday, January 25, so you may have missed a hedgehog-related warning that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention are issued early that afternoon.
The small, prickly, adorable mammals – which in recent years are popular as domestic animals – can carry salmonella bacteria and spread them to nearby people, according to the CDC.
"CDC and multi-state public health officials are investigating a multi-state outbreak of Salmonella infections associated with pet hedgehog contact," noted the agency's notice.
From Friday, the CDC said there were 1
Although a person was hospitalized, no deaths were reported. Three of the cases were reported in Missouri, two in Minnesota and one in Colorado, Maine, Mississippi, Nebraska, Texas and Wyoming.
Researchers collected samples from hedgehogs in the two Minnesota patients' homes and identified the strain of salmonella making people sick. It is still unclear whether all or some of the animals hedgehogs came from "a common supplier," the CDC said.
Symptoms of salmonella infection include diarrhea, fever and stomach cramps that last for four to seven days. In rare cases, salmonella infection can lead to death – a serious risk that the CDC cautiously suggested some households "might consider another pet."
But for those who could never share with a little "Spike", "Sonic" or "S", the agency has recommended avoiding some direct contact with their hedgehog: It's not sneezing or stuffing them up to your face for the perfect Instagram image.
"Kiss or snuggle hedgehogs because this can spread Salmonella bacteria in your face and mouth and make you sick," warns the CDC. "Don't let the hedgehogs roam freely in areas where food is cooked or stored, such as kitchens. "
If you touch a hedgehog or clean its supplies, immediately empty your hands and do not clean your hedgehog cage or toy in the same place you are preparing human food.
Being a high order for a new crop of hedgehog owners eager to cuddle with their new pets Hedgehogs are legal pets in most of the United States – but remain banned in California, Georgia, Hawaii, New York City, Pennsylvania and the nation's capital, according to H edgehog Welfare Society.
(c) 2019, The Washington Post · Amy B Wang