Dog and cat owners warned to isolate pets as illness spreads

Pet owners have been warned that cats and dogs are passing drug-resistant bacteria to humans. Portuguese researchers have found that pets are passing antibiotic-resistant illnesses to their owners.

Owners are being told to keep their pets isolated in one room if they fall ill and to deep clean their homes.

Lead researcher Juliana Menezes, of the University of Lisbon, said: “When your pet is unwell, consider isolating them in one room to prevent the spread of bacteria throughout the house and clean the other rooms thoroughly.”

Antibiotic-resistant superbugs kill more than 1million people across the world every year and could kill 10million a year by 2050, according to the World Health Organisation.

Researchers looked at cats, dogs and humans from households in Portugal and the UK. They found in some of the home the pets and their owners had the same resistant bacteria, and genetic testing found they had been passed between pet and human.