Sources of infectious microorganisms (bacteria, viruses, fungi and parasites) may be:

  • Carrier animals (the microorganisms resides in or on the body, but is not associated with any clinical disease or host response)
  • Animals in the incubation phase of disease
  • Animals with acute disease
  • Animals with chronic disease caused by persistent infection
  • Animals that are recovering from clinical disease but are still shedding the infectious agent (shedders)
  • People can be an important source of zoonotic pathogens, and like animals, they may be colonized or infected
  • In some cases, vectors such as lice, mosquitoes, flies, ticks, fleas, rodents and other vermin can transmit certain pathogens

stop sign iconContamination on a person’s clothing or body (fomite transmission), particularly the hands, is one of the most important sources of infectious microorganisms. This means YOU!

This is due to handling multiple animals in the course of your workday. Other potential sources include:

  • Food, and water
  • Inanimate objects
  • Medical equipment, supplies and drugs
  • Animal bedding
  • Environmental surfaces that have been contaminated

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