Pet Safety: Preventing Transmission of Animal Disease

Pets provide many benefits to humans. They comfort us and they give us companionship. However, some animals can also pass diseases to people.
Although animals can carry germs, it is important to know that you are more likely to get some of these germs from contaminated food or water than from your pet or another animal you encounter. Many groups encourage people to enjoy the benefits of common household pets. By following the tips on this website, you can enjoy your pets while protecting yourself against diseases they carry. Because wild animals can carry diseases that are dangerous to people, CDC and many physicians discourage direct contact with wildlife. You should never adopt wild animals as pets or bring them home. Teach children never to handle unfamiliar animals, wild or domestic, even if the animals appears to be friendly.

Guide to Pet Safety for Human Owners

Look below for information on protecting your family from pet-related illnesses and buying pets that are safe for your home.

Cat diseases that are contagious to humans

Besides allergies to fur and dander, cats can pass a variety of illnesses to humans. Protect your family and your feline friend.

Canine diseases contagious to humans.

Dogs can carry germs that infect humans, too. Dog owners should follow these health and safety tips.

Bird Diseases Contagious to Humans

Parrots, parakeets, macaws and other pet birds can carry dangerous germs. Follow these hygiene tips to avoid illness from your feathered friend.

Infants, children and pet safety

Parents who own pets should be careful and follow these tips to keep their infants and children safe from dog or cat bites, disease or other dangers.

Safe Dogs for Families

Find out if a dog is the right pet for you and your children. Dog safety, dog bites and other information for potential dog owners.

The information on this site was produced by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and other government sources and has been compiled by the site owners, who are not responsible for accuracy or completeness. Site design and layout are trademarks of

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