Man dies after infection from his dog

In a medical exception case, a man died in Bremen of an infection he had contracted while Cuddling with his dog. The 63-year-old patient, the bacterium Capnocytophaga canimorsus has been demonstrated, reports of the Physicians of the Red cross hospital RKK. The pathogens present in dog saliva.

The man came in August 2018, with signs of Sepsis, better known as blood poisoning, to the hospital. He died despite treatment with antibiotics, about two weeks later of multiple organ failure, write to the Doctors in the “European Journal of Case Reports in Internal Medicine”. The man had been licked by his dog, but not bitten.


Sepsis is extremely dangerous and should be treated quickly. The Sepsis Foundation advises, 112 to call or directly to the hospital to go, if at least two of these symptoms occur:

  • Fever or chills
  • Confusion
  • rapid breathing
  • extreme feeling of illness
  • discolored arms and legs

People can become infected through animal bites, is known. Infections can also be done by Licking, when pathogens penetrate small defects of the skin, according to the RCC. In the case of a severe course of the disease risk factors such as a weakened immune system, alcohol, disease or removal of the Spleen played mostly a role, says Martin Langenbeck, chief doctor of the emergency room at the RCC. The Bremer Patient but belonged to none of these at-risk groups.

The RCC emphasizes how rare this case is. The world is just another Patient with a severe course of the disease is not yet known, neither bitten yet had a weakened immune system. The hospital wants to set up rules, therefore, no behavior, who wants to keep cuddling with his Pets. “When you get symptoms that are very strange, and you have a pet, then you should tell the doctor,” says a spokeswoman.

Dog, cat, very, rarely, rabbit

The pathogen Capnocytophaga canimorsus is often found in the oral mucosa of dogs, and in the oral cavity of cats, explains Lisa Sprague from the Friedrich-Loeffler-Institute in Jena. In very rare cases it was also found in rabbits.

“Human infections have occurred in the United States, Canada, Europe, Australia and South Africa,” says Sprague, who has been researching zoonoses, i.e. diseases transmitted from animals to humans. An infection with Capnocytophaga canimorsus after all of the studies, extremely rarely, cause a but histories of serious illness, says Sprague.

“Let animal bites are always from the doctor to clean and care for, to minimize the amount of germs get in the wound and the risk of serious septic gradients will be reduced,” is the conclusion of the Bremen Chefarzts long Beck. In the case of animal bites people with high infection should receive risk antibiotics.

In addition to bite and Lick can infect people through contact with feces in your pet. Especially Pregnant women should be in contact with cats, be careful, as this toxoplasmosis can be transferred.