Can my dog catch my cold?

Like many other Berkshirites, the Dog Blog blogger has been feeling a little under the weather lately, so she thought it would be a neat idea to post about Zoonoses! (Pronounced “zoo-no-sees”)

What in the world is a zoonosis, you ask?  It sounds like something out of a Dr. Seuss book!

A zoonosis is a disease or health condition that can be transferred between animals and people.

That’s right, there are a few bugs you can give to and get from your pets.  (Don’t worry, it happens very rarely!  You’re MUCH more likely to get another human sick or get sick from another human.)  But, it’s always good to be in the know!

Actually, you and your dog can’t share the majority of sicknesses you come down with! Here’s just a few examples of…

Things Your Dog Can’t Catch From You

Why no, I haven't seen your hot pack.

Why no, I haven't seen your hot pack. (Staffer's BHS alum, Boston.)

  • Common cold
  • Influenza
  • Stomach flu
  • Mononucleosis
  • Poorly thrown tennis balls

So, why can’t your dog catch your cold? Well, a lot of viruses, bacteria, parasites, and other fun organisms can only survive in the bodies of certain species.  Something about that species’ body (animal or human) is unique and provides them with what they need to live.  So, the cold virus can (unfortunately) live and thrive happily in your body, but it doesn’t stand a chance in your pet’s.

Lesson learned?  If you’re sick in bed with the flu, your dog can safely snuggle up with you while you recover! :)

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11 Responses to Can my dog catch my cold?

  1. Corky Lover says:

    Yay for Boston! and Super yay for poorly thrown tennis balls! :-) Excellent Job-keep up the great work!

  2. nicole says:

    Im glad to hear this. My dogs are ALWAYS under me even moreso when Im sick. Like now I have a cold and they wont leave my side =) glad to know they’ll be ok

  3. [...] to the Berkshire Humane Society in Pittsfield, Massachusetts, your dog can’t catch the common cold from you. Many viruses and [...]

  4. Ashly says:

    I love that last one!!! Too funny.

  5. silver beads says:

    i always knew people cannot pass their cold to animals but i never knew the reason, this makes sense, i mean if you think about it, dogs dont sweat and people do, not that it has anything to do with it, just the difference between our bodies….
    thank you for making it clear, BTW i have a cold now and that is how i found your blog :)

  6. cesar says:

    thank you soo much now i can cuddle my french bull dog she is so lovable

  7. sandy says:

    I owned 3 dogs and all three are always by my side especially if I am sick which happens to be the case right now. One of them loves to show his affection by licking me. I am happy to know that they are safe from my germs.

  8. Poorly thrown tennis balls gave me quite a laugh! And I’m so glad to know that I can’t pass on my cold to my dog! :)

  9. Robyn says:

    I got a good laugh when I saw the poorly thrown tennis balls at the end of the list – very clever! thxs for writing this :)

  10. Martin Wong says:

    I really have learned a great deal from reading your blog! keep on going! I am looking forward to reading even more!

  11. Thank you for another excellent article. Where else could anyone get
    that kind of info in such a perfect way of writing?
    I have a presentation next week, and I’m on the look for such information.

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