Rat bite fever (RBF) is an uncommon disease in people, but one that I nonetheless spend a lot of time talking about with owners, veterinarians, and physicians (and sometimes lawyers). It’s a bacterial infection spread by (you guessed it) rats. The causative agent of RBF is an obscure bacterium called Streptobacillus moniliformis, which lives

I’ve written (ranted?) regularly about fake service dogs and disruptive emotional support animals. I’ve had the odd “you must hate animals” reply, but selfish people who slap a service dog vest on their pet so they can take it anywhere, just because they want to take it anywhere, cause problems for people who really need

When I talk to veterinary and public health audiences about zoonotic diseases, I often talk about rat bite fever because it highlights some common issues that are important to keep in mind.

Usually, I start by presenting a case of a child with a fever and rash.

Then, I mention that someone finally asked about

The post below is reproduced from CANresist.blog. It applies equally for veterinary medicine.

I think most people buy into the concept of fossil fuels being finite resources. Someday, they’ll run out or logistics and cost of extraction will make them impractical. Accordingly, we’re thinking about ways to reduce and improve use (to delay the

A series of strange but rare infections or the sign of a new problem? That’s always the question we have to think about when there’s a report of a new disease. Determining that can be a challenge, and often “time will tell” is the true answer.

A paper in the most recent edition of the

HamstersThe recent (ongoing) Seoul virus outbreak associated with pet rats and recurrent Salmonella outbreaks linked to feeder rats have focused more attention on the national and international movement of rodents. Most people probably don’t realize the massive number of rodents that are shipped internationally, and we don’t really understand the risks. Anytime animals are moved

Cat on bed2This month’s edition of the Internal Medicine Journal contains an article entitled High rates of potentially infectious exposures between immunocompromised patients and their companion animals: an unmet need for education (Gurry et al. 2017). The study is fairly superficial and there’s nothing particularly surprising in the paper, with results similar to what has