Can my pet contract Listeriosis?


What is Listeriosis?

Listeriosis is a foodborne illness caused by the Listeria Monocytogenes Bacteria. This bacteria causes sporadic bacterial infections that affect a wide range of animals, including humans, cats, dogs and birds. Listeria can live and grow in both cold and warm conditions, that is why it can continue to thrive in the fridge. Listeria can cause different types of infections such as blood and skin infections, or even Encephalitis or Meningitis.


Though our pets may be susceptible to Listeria, they rarely get Listeriosis. The bacteria is mainly seen in ruminants such as rabbits, cattle and sheep.

This does not mean that we should be careless and feed or allow our pets to be exposed to sources of Listeria; such as contaminated polony or cold meats, unpasteurized dairy products, under cooked meat, garbage and dead animals.


If by chance your pet does come into contact with Listeria here are some symptoms to watch out for:

. Lethargy

. Weakness

. Lack of appetite

. nausea

. vomiting

. Fever

Regardless of the cause of these symptoms, if your pet exhibits any of these symptoms they should be seen to by a veterinary surgeon.

Incubation period

The incubation period for Listeria varies depending on the type of infection, it can vary from 2 days up to 9 days.


Early detection and antibiotics are crucial to the successful treatment of Listeriosis.

All in all if we are wise and take precautionary measures, we have NOTHING to worry about in terms of Listeria.

Information provided by the FDA U.S Food & Drug Administration and the MSD Veterinary Manual.

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