Clinical Resources

What to know

  • There is a risk for zoonotic disease from contact with pets, farm animals, wildlife, and other animals.
  • Healthcare providers should include questions about contact with animals when screening patients.
  • Patients should be counseled on ways to prevent zoonotic diseases.
A female doctor talks to a patient


Physicians and other healthcare providers should be aware of the risk for zoonotic diseases in pets, farm animals, and wildlife, as well as the risk of diseases spreading between animals and their owners or caretakers. Counsel patients on prevention practices, including how to stay safe and healthy around animals. Consider asking about contact with animals at home or away from home. This might include asking about pets, possible workplace exposures, and leisure activities.

Always consider the potential for a zoonotic infection when seeing sick patients. Patients at higher risk for serious illness with zoonotic infections include children under 5 years old, people with weakened immune systems, adults 65 and older, and, in many cases, pregnant women.

The following resources include current guidelines on specific zoonotic disease topics, educational resources, and references to disease-specific information.