I know this doesn’t relate to infectious diseases, but it’s still an interesting pet-related public health topic. The latest edition of the CDC’s Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report has a article entitled "Nonfatal fall-related injuries associated with dogs and cats – United States, 2001-2006". It contains some rather interesting information. Among the highlights:
- Based on their data, they estimate that an average of 86 629 people are injured from falls associated with dogs and cats every year. Over 26000 fractures occur.
- Injuries were most frequent in people 0-14 and 35-54 years of age, but fractures were most common in people over 75 years old. Women were 2.1 times more likely to be injured than men.
- 88% of injuries were associated with dogs.
- Most of the injuries (62% from dogs, 86% from cats) occurred at home.
- Walking and chasing pets were the most common activities associated with injuries. Falling or tripping over the pet was the most common cause of injury, followed by being pushed or pulled over by a pet.
- 11% of injuries associated with cats occurred when someone was chasing a cat. (I can relate to that, because I almost fell down the stairs once trying to catch my cat after he’d stolen an entire roast off the kitchen counter!)