Dog owners warned not to share a bed with their pets due to deadly superbug

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Dogs owners are being urged to stop sharing a bed with their furry friends to try and stop an untreatable superbug.

The mcr-1 gene is believed to transfer from animals to humans and it can build resistance to life-saving drugs.

Drug-resistant infections kill an estimated 700,000 people a year worldwide, and the UN warns that could rise to 10million by 2050 if nothing is done.

Boffins are now warning of an instance where humans can pick up the bug.

It was first identified in China in 2015.

Dog lovers have been urged to not regularly share beds with their pooches because they harbour mcr-1 in the gut before its transported via microscopic fecal particles.

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Dogs harbour the mcr-1 gene in the gut before its transported via microscopic fecal particles

Dog beds can also be a risk because of frequent contact with humans.

A study at the University of Lisbon found that in two of the households where dogs had tissue infections, the gene was present in the dog and the owner.

Fecal samples were taken from 126 healthy people that were living with 102 cats and dogs in 80 households over a period of two years up to February 2020.

It was found that eight of the dogs and four humans were hosting bacteria including mcr-1.

The results also showed that three of the dogs appeared to be healthy and the others had tissue or urinary tract infections.

The findings were presented at the European Congress of Clinical Microbiology and Infectious Diseases Conference over the weekend.

Experts told attendees that agricultural regions particularly in southern European countries that use colistin will be less likely to contract the mcr-1 gene.


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Dr Juliana Menezes, who led the research, said: “Colistin is used when all other antibiotics have failed, it is a crucial treatment of last resort.

“If bacteria resistant to all drugs acquire this resistance gene, they would become untreatable, and that’s a scenario we must avoid at all costs.

“We know that the overuse of antibiotics drives resistance and it is vital that they are used responsibly, not just in medicine but also in veterinary medicine and in farming.”