A type of bacteria that causes fever, diarrhea and cramping is spreading in a multi-state outbreak near Georgia, and the likely cause is puppies that are sold through the national chain Petland.
The bacterium, called Campylobacter, seems to be resistant to several front-line antibiotics often used to treat it. So far the outbreak has caused 13 hospitalizations but no deaths, the CDC said in a report this week.
Of the 55 people infected in the outbreak so far, 14 were Petland employees from five states, and 35 either bought a Petland puppy, were around a Petland puppy, or visited a Petland. Other infected people had other kinds of links to Petland and its puppies.
The investigation is being undertaken by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and other agencies.
The 12 states where the infected people live are scattered across the map: Florida, Kansas, Utah, Wyoming and others. Georgia is not yet part of the outbreak but Florida is the second-most affected state, with 13 victims. Ohio has 22.
The CDC recommends that people buy puppies that are bright, alert and playful and aren’t dirty with poop. Get a checkup at the vet.