Home https://server7.kproxy.com/servlet/redirect.srv/sruj/smyrwpoii/p2/ Health https://server7.kproxy.com/servlet/redirect.srv/sruj/smyrwpoii/p2/ Superbugs discovered in raw dog food pose ‘a risk to public health’, researchers warn

Superbugs discovered in raw dog food pose ‘a risk to public health’, researchers warn



Superbugs discovered in raw dog food pose ‘a risk to public health’, researchers warn

  • Researchers revealed evidence that some raw dog food products contain bacteria that are resistant to many types of antibiotics that are often used to treat disease.
  • All 14 samples of tested food contained drug-resistant forms of Enterococcus
  • Only 3 out of 41 other dog foods, including wet food, dry food and treats, included

Feeding Dogs a trendy raw meat diet poses a public health risk due to a threat from potentially dangerous superbugs, according to researchers.

Giving cooked meat to pets has grown in popularity because owners believe it mimics a natural dog diet and is better than cooked or processed pet food.

However, researchers have uncovered evidence that some raw dog food products contain bacteria that are resistant to many types of antibiotics that are often used to treat disease in humans.

All 14 raw dog food samples tested contained drug-resistant forms of Enterococcus, a type of bacteria found in the animal’s intestines.

Tests on samples of 41 other dog foods, including wet food, dry food and treats, found only three contained antibiotic-resistant Enterococcus, but 16 had ‘non-superbug’ strains of the bacteria.

Researchers have uncovered evidence that some raw dog food products contain bacteria that are resistant to many types of antibiotics that are often used to treat disease in humans.  Image: Stock

Researchers have uncovered evidence that some raw dog food products contain bacteria that are resistant to many types of antibiotics commonly used to treat disease in humans. Image: Stock

Usually harmless if confined to the intestine, Enterococcus can wreak havoc in other parts of the human body and even cause sepsis.

In a separate study, researchers found that a gene that confers bacterial resistance to another important antibiotic is transmitted from pets to humans.

The results of both studies will be presented this weekend at the European Congress of Clinical Microbiology and Infectious Diseases.

Dr Ana Freitas, from the Faculty of Pharmacy at the University of Porto in Portugal, who led the dog food research, said: ‘The close contact between humans and dogs … poses an international public health risk.’

She added: ‘Authorities need to raise awareness of the potential health risks when feeding pets raw diets. The preparation of dog food including choice of ingredients and hygiene practices must be reviewed. ”

The samples of raw dog food, which included untreated salmon, chicken, turkey, lamb and beef, had strains of Enterococcus that are resistant to common antibiotics.

Tests on samples of 41 other dog foods, including wet food, dry food and treats, found only three contained antibiotic-resistant Enterococcus, but 16 had ¿non-superbug¿ strains of the bacteria.  Image: Stock

Tests on samples of 41 other dog foods, including wet food, dry food and treats, found only three contained antibiotic-resistant Enterococcus, but 16 had ‘non-superbug’ strains of the bacteria. Image: Stock

Nearly a quarter were resistant to linezolid, a ‘last resort’ antibiotic that was often used only when other drugs had failed.

The raw samples tested were from two named dog foods sold in Portugal.

Meanwhile, veterinarians at the University of Lisbon found that eight dogs out of 102 tested, along with four human owners out of 126, housed bacteria with a gene that makes insects resistant to colistin, another ‘last resort’ antibiotic.

This means that pets can act as ‘reservoirs’ of the gene and spread resistance to colistin.

Heidi Maskelyne of British animal feed manufacturer ProDog Raw, which carries out strict bacterial control, said owners should choose a reputable source of pet food.

‘Why do you feed the dog non-standard food?’ she asked.

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