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Guinea pigs linked to multi-state salmonella outbreak

A Guinea pig. (Photo: Getty Images)

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is warning pet owners about a multi-state outbreak of salmonella linked to guinea pigs.

Nine people have been infected in eight states. So far, no illnesses have been reported in Washington.
The illnesses started between July 2015 through December of last year.

Most people recover from salmonella exposure without treatment but in some cases, symptoms can get so severe that patients need to be hospitalized.

The CDC has some tips to keep you and your pets healthy:

  • It says rodents are not recommended as pets for children younger than 5, pregnant women or elderly adults, all who may have weakened immune systems.
  • Always wash your hands after touching or feeding pet rodents or cleaning after them.
  • Do not kiss or hold pet rodents close to your face.