Red Book 28e
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Table 6.8. Diseases Transmitted by Animals

Table 6-8

Disease and/or Organism

Common Animal Sources/Reservoirs

Vector or Modes of Transmission

Bacterial Diseases

Aeromonas species

Aquatic animals, especially shellfish

Wound infection, ingestion of contaminated food or water

Anthrax (Bacillus anthracis)

Herbivores (cattle, goats, sheep)

Direct contact with infected animals or contact with animal products (eg, hides) contaminated with B anthracis spores

Bartonellosis (Bartonella species, B vinsonii vinsonii, B vinsonii berkhoffi, B v arupensis, B koehleri, B rochalaime, B quintana)

Dogs, cattle, cats, body lice

Bites of arthropods suspected, but evidence is lacking in many species

Brucellosis (Brucella species)

Cattle, goats, sheep, swine, rarely dogs, elk, bison, deer

Direct contact with birth products, ingestion of contaminated dairy products, inhalation of aerosols, through skin wounds

Campylobacteriosis (Campylobacter jejuni)

Poultry, dogs (especially puppies), kittens, ferrets, hamsters, birds

Ingestion of contaminated food, water, milk, direct contact (particularly with animals with diarrhea), person-to-person (fecal-oral)


Dogs, rarely cats

Bites, scratches, and contact

Cat-scratch disease (Bartonella henselae)

Cats, infrequently other animals (less than 10%)

Scratches, bites; fleas play a role in cat-to-cat transmission (evidence for transmission from cat fleas to humans is lacking)

Erysipelothrix rhusiopathiae

Pigs, sheep, cattle, horses, birds, fish, shellfish

Direct contact with animal or contaminated animal product

Hemolytic-uremic syndrome (eg, Shiga toxin-producing Escherichia coli) (STEC)

Cattle, sheep, goats, deer

Ingestion of undercooked contaminated ground beef, unpasteurized milk, or other contaminated foods or water, person-to-person contact (fecal-oral), petting zoo contact, county fairs (fecal-oral)

Leptospirosis (Leptospira species)

Dogs, rats, livestock, other wild animals

Contact with or ingestion of water, food, or soil contaminated with urine

Lyme disease (Borrelia burgdorferi)

Mice, squirrels, shrews, and other small vertebrates

Black legged or deer tick bites (Ixodes scapularis or I pacificus)

Mycobacteriosis (Mycobacterium marinum, others)

Fish (and cleaning aquaria)

Skin injury or contamination of existing wound

Mycobacterium tuberculosis

Elephants, giraffes, rhinoceroses, bison, deer, elk



Cats, dogs, other animals

Bites, scratches, licks

Plague (Yersinia pestis)

Rodents, cats, ground squirrels, prairie dogs

Bite of rodent fleas, (especially tropical rat fleas, Xenopsylla cheopis), direct contact with infected animals, person-to-person with pneumonic plague

Rat-bite fever (Streptobacillus moniliformis, Spirillum minus)

Rodents (especially rats, occasionally squirrels), cats, weasels, gerbils

Bites, secretions, and contaminated food, milk, and water

Relapsing fever (tickborne) (Borrelia species)

Wild rodents

Soft tick bites (Ornithodoros species)

Salmonellosis (Salmonella species)

Poultry, lizards, snakes, salamanders, iguanas, dogs, cats, rodents, ferrets, turtles, other wild and domestic animals, hamsters, hedgehogs, Komodo dragons

Ingestion of contaminated food, milk, and water; direct contact; contact with fecally contaminated surfaces; person-to-person (fecal-oral)

Streptococcus iniae

Fish grown by aquaculture

Skin injury during handling of fish

Tetanus (Clostridium tetani)

Any animal, usually indirect via soil containing animal feces

Wound infection, skin injury or soft tissue injury with inoculation of bacteria (as from soil or a contaminated object), contaminated bites

Tularemia (Francisella tularensis)

Wild rabbits, hares, voles, sheep, cattle, muskrats, moles, cats, hamsters

Wood tick bites (Dermacentor andersoni), dog tick bites (D variabilis), Lone-star tick bites (Amblyomma americanum), deerfly bites, direct contact with infected animal, ingestion of contaminated water, mechanical transmission from claws or teeth (cats), aerosolization of tissues or excreta

Vibrio species


Skin injury or contamination of existing wound, ingestion of contaminated food

Yersiniosis (Yersinia enterocolitica, Yersinia pseudotuberculosis)

Swine, deer, elk, horses, goats, sheep, cattle, rodents, birds, rabbits

Ingestion of contaminated food, water, or milk; rarely direct contact, person-to-person (fecal-oral)

Fungal Diseases

Cryptococcosis (Cryptococcus neoformans)

Excreta of birds, particularly pigeons

Inhalation of aerosols from accumulations of bird feces

Histoplasmosis (Histoplasma capsulatum)

Excreta of bats, birds, particularly starlings

Inhalation of aerosols from accumulations of bat and bird feces

Ringworm/tinea corporis (Microsporum and Trichophyton species)

Cats, dogs, fowl, pigs, moles, horses, rodents, cattle, monkeys, goats

Direct contact

Parasitic Diseases

Anisakiasis (Anisakis species)

Saltwater and anadromous fish

Ingestion of undercooked or raw fish (eg, sushi)

Babesiosis (several Babesia species)

Mice, dogs, wildlife

Tick bite, (I pacificus suspected)

Balantidiasis (Balantidium coli)


Ingestion of contaminated food or water

Baylisascariasis (Baylisascaris procyonis)


Ingestion of eggs shed in raccoon feces

Dwarf tapeworm (Hymenolepis nana)


Ingestion of eggs from feces (contaminated food, water), person-to-person (fecal-oral)

Cryptosporidiosis (Cryptosporidium species)

Domestic animals (particularly cattle, sheep, goats, birds, reptiles), young animals

Ingestion of contaminated water or foods, person-to-person (fecal-oral)

Cutaneous larva migrans (Ancylostoma species)

Dogs, cats

Penetration of skin by larvae, which develop in soil contaminated with animal feces

Cysticercosis/pork tapeworm (Taenia solium)

Swine (intermediate host)

Ingestion of eggs from fecal-oral contact or contaminated food, water, ingestion of cysts in raw or undercooked meat (adult tapeworm infection)

Dog tapeworm (Dipylidium caninum)

Dogs, cats

Ingestion of fleas infected with larvae

Echinococcosis, hydatid disease (Echinococcus species)

Dogs, foxes, possibly other carnivores, coyotes, wolves, moose, caribou, rodents, sheep (the most common intermediate host worldwide), also swine, cattle, horses, camels

Ingestion of eggs shed in animal feces

Fish tapeworm (Diphyllobothrium latum)

Saltwater and freshwater fish

Ingestion of larvae in raw or undercooked fish

Giardiasis (Giardia intestinalis)

Wild and domestic animals, including dogs, cats, beavers, muskrats

Ingestion of cysts in contaminated food, water, person-to-person

Hookworm (Ancylostoma caninum, A braziliense)


Penetration of skin by larvae, which develop in soil contaminated with animal feces

Taeniasis, beef (Taenia saginata)


Ingestion of larvae in undercooked beef

Toxoplasmosis (Toxoplasma gondii)

Cats, livestock

Ingestion of oocysts from cat feces, consumption of cysts in undercooked meat, contact with birth products of cats

Trichinosis (Trichinella spiralis)

Swine, horses, bears, seals, walruses

Ingestion of larvae in raw or undercooked meat

Visceral larva migrans (Toxocara canis and Toxocara cati)

Dogs, cats

Ingestion of eggs, usually from soil contaminated by animal feces

Chlamydial and Rickettsial Diseases

Human ehrlichiosis (Ehrlichia chaffeensis and E ewingii)

Deer, dogs, gray foxes, goats

Tick bites (lone-star ticks, Amblyomma americanum)

Human anaplasmosis (Anaplasma phagocytophilum)

Deer, dogs, elk, wild rodents, horses, ruminants

Black-legged tick bites (Ixodes scapularis) and western black-legged tick bites (I pacificus)

Psittacosis (Chlamydophila psittaci)

Pet birds (especially psittacine birds) and poultry

Inhalation of aerosols from feces of infected birds

Q fever (Coxiella burnetii)

Sheep, goats, cows, cats, dogs, wild rodents, birds

Direct contact and aerosols from birth products or animal tissues or products (Possible role of ticks not well defined)

Rickettsialpox (Rickettsia akari)

House mice

Mite bites (house mouse mite, Liponyssoides sanguineus)

Rocky Mountain spotted fever (Rickettsia rickettsii)

Dogs, wild rodents, rabbits

Tick bites; rarely by direct contamination with infectious material from ticks (American dog tick, Dermacentor variabilis; Rocky Mountain wood tick, D andersoni; and brown dog tick, Rhipicephalus sanguineus)

Rickettsia parkeri infection (Maculatum disease, American boutonneuse fever)

Unknown, perhaps small wild rodents

Gulf coast ticks, Amblyomma maculatum

Typhus, fleaborne endemic typhus (Rickettsia typhi)

Rats, opossums, cats, dogs

Rat flea feces scratched into abrasions; less common, other fleas (Oriental rat flea, Xenopsylla cheopis)

Typhus, louseborne epidemic typhus (Rickettsia prowazekii)

Flying squirrels

Person-to-person via body louse, contact with flying squirrels, their nests, or ectoparasites (role and species of ectoparasites undefined)

Viral Diseases

Colorado tick fever

Wild rodents, (squirrels, chipmunks)

Tick bites (Rocky Mountain wood tick, Dermacentor andersoni)


LaCrosse (the most common member of the California encephalitis group)

Wild rodents

Mosquito bites (Aedes triseriatus)

Eastern equine

Wild birds, poultry, horses

Mosquito bites (Coquillettidia species, Aedes species)

Western equine

Wild birds, poultry, horses

Mosquito bites (Culex tarsalis)

St Louis

Wild birds, poultry

Mosquito bites (Culex pipiens,Culex species)

Venezuelan equine

Rodents, horses

Mosquito bites (34 species in 8 genera)


Rodents, rabbits

Tick bites (groundhog tick, Ixodes cookei)

West Nile

Wild birds, horses

Mosquito bites (Culex species)

Nipah virus

Undetermined, possibly bats and pigs

Close contact with infected pigs

Hendra virus

Flying foxes; horses become infected

Contact with body fluids of infected horses


Wild rodents

Inhalation of aerosols of infected secreta and excreta

B virus (formerly herpesvirus simiae)

Macaque monkeys

Bite or exposure to secretions

Lymphocytic choriomeningitis

Rodents, particularly hamsters, mice

Direct contact, inhalation of aerosols, ingestion of food contaminated with rodent excreta

Rabies (Lyssavirus)

In the United States, primarily wildlife (bats, raccoons, skunks, foxes, ferrets) or, less frequently, domestic animals (dogs, cats, cattle, goats, bear, ponies)

Bites, rarely contact of open wounds with infected materials (eg, saliva, neural tissue)


Prairie dogs, African rodents

Direct contact, bite, scratch

Influenza (H5NI)

Chickens, birds, swine

Contact with infected animals or aerosols (markets, slaughter house)

Orf (pox virus of sheep)


Contact with sheep saliva

Severe acute respiratory virus (coronavirus)

Civet cats, potentially other animal species

Unclear; person-to-person (respiratory, contact)

Table 6.8. Diseases Transmitted by Animals has been found in Red Book 28e

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