Warning for pet owners: Man dies after being licked by his dog

WARNING: Readers may find the photo in this article confronting.

It may be hard to resist a ‘kiss’ from your precious pooch, but this story may make you think twice the next time your dog decides to plant one on you.

A 63-year-old man in Germany has sadly died after he was infected with a rare bacterial infection after being licked by his pet dog.


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Details of the tragic case have been revealed in a report published by doctors in the European Journal of Case Reports in Internal Medicine.

According to the paper, the previously healthy man was hospitalised with “flu-like symptoms and severe sepsis and purpura fulminans”.

He was later found to be infected with capnocytophaga canimorsus, a bacterium that is most commonly found in the mouths of dogs and cats.

Doctors say the bacteria is most frequently transmitted by dog bites, however the man was not bitten.

“He had been touched and licked, but not bitten or injured, by his dog, his only pet, in previous weeks,” the report said.

“There was no hospitalisation or recent travel abroad.”

PHOTO: Supplied by European Journal of Case Reports in Internal Medicine

Despite extensive intensive care, the man’s conditions deteriorated and he died from multiorgan failure.

The tragic incident has prompted doctors to issue a warning for pet owners to seek urgent medical advice if they experience unusual flu-like symptoms.

“Pet owners with banal, for instance flu-like, symptoms should urgently seek medical advice when symptoms are unusual,” doctors said in the report.

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