Reviewed by Amy Flowers on December 04, 2017


Cleveland Clinic: "Roundworms."<br> American Animal Hospital Association: "Zoonotic Diseases."<br> American Kennel Club: "Ringworm in Dogs -- Symptoms, Treatment, and Prevention."<br> Cornell University: "Ringworm: A Serious but Readily Treatable Affliction," "Toxoplasmosis in Cats."<br> Mayo Clinic: "Ringworm (body)."<br> CDC: "Parasites - Toxoplasmosis (Toxoplasma infection)."<br> Animal Medical Care: "Roundworm Transmission From Pets to Humans."<br> Pond5.<br> AudioJungle.

© 2017 WebMD, LLC. All rights reserved.

WebMD Archive

Video Transcript

SPEAKER: You love your pet, but there's a small chance you could get one of these preventable diseases from him. Round worms are parasites that infect dogs and cats. Their eggs and larva show up in your pet's poop. You could get sick if you accidentally touch it or a surface that it's been on. You may have symptoms like stomach pain, vomiting, wheezing, or a fever.

Ringworm is another wriggly- sounding infection. But guess what? It's not a worm. It's a fungus. And it can show up as inflamed, circular patches without fur on your pet. You'll risk catching it if you touch the spots on your pal, or touch something he laid on or rubbed against. Ringworm can cause itchy, red, circular rashes on people, too. Now, let's talk about a bad bug that affects felines. It's a parasitic disease called toxoplasmosis. Maybe you've heard that people catch it by handling infected cat litter. They can, but you're more likely to get it from eating undercooked meat or unwashed fruit and veggies that the parasite has been on. Most people have no symptoms, but for pregnant women, it can put the baby at greater risk for serious health problems, including vision or hearing loss, or mental disabilities and seizures. If your immune system is weak, the infection could give you breathing trouble, heart disease, or other symptoms.

Everyone can do some simple things to avoid getting sick. Wash your hands often, don't let your kids play near outdoor areas where Fido or Fluffy poops, ask your vet if your pet needs to be dewormed, and if you're pregnant, let someone else handle the cat litter.