Can MRSA staph infection be spread to animals?

Staph Infection Information

Just wondering if ur own pets can carry the bacteria? i here alot on the news about it and was just wondering.

During the summer of 2005, researchers in The Netherlands discovered that three pig farmers or their families were infected by MRSA bacteria that were also found on their pigs. Researchers from Radboud University Nijmegen are now investigating the extent of the MRSA bacteria in pigs and whether it will become characterized among the zoonoses.

MRSA Staph Infection

Staph InfectionMRSA is acknowledged to be a human commensal and pathogen. MRSA has been found in cats, dogs and horses, where it can cause the same problems as it does in humans. Owners can transfer the organism to their pets and vice-versa, and MRSA in animals is generally believed to be derived from humans.

Currently, it is estimated that greater than 55% of the antibiotics used in the US are given to food animals (e.g. chickens, pigs and cattle) in the absence of disease. Antibiotic use in food animal production has been associated with the emergence of antibiotic-resistant strains of bacteria including Salmonella, Campylobacter, Escherichia coli and Enterococcus, among others. There is substantial evidence from the US and European Union that these resistant bacteria cause antibiotic-resistant infections in humans. The American Society for Microbiology (ASM), the American Public Health Association (APHA) and the American Medical Association (AMA) have called for substantial restrictions on antibiotic use in food animal production including an end to all non-therapeutic uses. The food animal and pharmaceutical industries have fought hard to prevent new regulations that would limit the use of antibiotics in food animal production. For example, in 2000 the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) announced their intention to rescind approval for fluoroquinolone use in poultry production because of substantial evidence linking it to the emergence of fluoroquinolone resistant Campylobacter infections in humans. The final decision to ban fluoroquinolones from use in poultry production was not made until 5 years later because of challenges from the food animal and pharmaceutical industries.[9] Today, there are two federal bills (S.742 and H.R. 2562) aimed at phasing out non-therapeutic antibiotics in US food animal production. These bills are endorsed by many public health and medical organizations including the American Nurses Association (ANA), the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), and the American Public Health Association (APHA).

Additional Resources:

Mange — Can mange give my pet a staph infection?

Staph Infection Medication

The illegal use of amantadine to medicate poultry in the South of China and other parts of southeast Asia means that although the H5N1 (avian flu) strain that appeared in Hong Kong in 1997 was amantadine sensitive, the more recent strains have all been amantadine resistant. This seriously reduces the Infection treatment options available to doctors in the event of an influenza pandemic.