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homeTuesday 18th September 2018

Pet store workers pick up bug from poorly lambs

Katie Coyne19/04/2018 - 12:14

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Pet Mania staff taken ill
Pet Mania staff taken ill

An outbreak of gastrointestinal illness has been linked to a Teeside pet store, Pet Mania, and Public Health England’s North East team are investigating. 

Local reports said three workers at the store on Portrack Lane, Stockton-On-Tees became unwell in the first week of April and needed hospital treatment.

PHE North East protection team has confirmed two cases of both cryptosporidium and campylobacter, plus another three cases with cryptosporidium.

The store has remained open as there is believed to be no risk to the public.

Staff became ill after looking after lambs who were unwell and were being treated in an isolation unit away from the public, according to the Gazette Live.

Dr Peter Acheson said: ‘Investigations by Environmental Health Officers from Stockton-On-Tees Borough Council are on-going and management at the premises are co-operating fully.

‘At this stage there is no wider public health concern and appropriate control measures are in place.

‘Cryptosporidiosis and campylobacter are generally mild infections and in most cases the symptoms of abdominal pain and diarrhoea settle in a few days. However, in a few cases symptoms can be unpleasant with diarrhoea lasting for several weeks.

Dr Acheson added: ‘Many animals can carry parasites and germs that can affect people and evidence shows those cases can peak in the spring.

‘To help avoid unnecessary illness, I would remind everyone to wash their hands thoroughly using soap and water after they have handled animals and before eating or drinking.

‘People may be tempted to use hand gels and wipes after touching animals, but although they remove visible dirt and contamination, they may not be effective in removing the germs.’

 

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