Evidence shows start paying attention to your environment to have a healthier pet

Health Stuff TO Know

Doctor's Opinion

In the News: A new study is showing that chemicals in pet feces may serve as warning signs for impending bad human health.

Toxic chemicals found in our pet's stoolsHealth Stuff TO Know

Who’s this for:

  1. for anyone who has pets.
  2. for anyone who is interested in the environment.

What’re some points I should focus on?

We’ve already known, for some time now, that animals pickup, “uptake,” bad chemicals from the environment faster and earlier. This means that our pets are in danger of picking up chemicals from our environmental activities: issues like smoking, pollution, and pharmaceutical use.

This study showed that our pets at home: cats & dogs, in particular, had high concentrations of the dangerous chemicals in their feces.

Our findings suggest that pets are coming into contact with aromatic amines that leach from products in their household environment. Sridhar Chinthakindi, Ph.D

So, it turns out that the bulk of the bad chemical exposure is coming from what’s around us.

  • This means that humans are also in contact with those bad chemicals.
  • Too much exposure can lead to maladies such as cancer and allergies.

The study also showed that when pet medicines break down, they leave an environmental impact. In this example, they collected ‘aromatic amines’ from the breakdown of common flea control medicines.

Expert Opinion:

What should I do next?

At the moment, there’s not much to really worry about. The concentration of these chemicals: aromatic amines, phthalates, melamine, bisphenols, and others was low.

But, this does serve as a good warning for us to understand that our pets and humans live together in an ecosystem. Dr. Puja Uppal

Also, future studies need to take a look at the development of bladder and colon cancer in pets who have elevated concentrations of aromatic amines in their feces and urine.

The big picture:

Keep your environment clean and understand that you and your pet are constantly picking up chemical detritus from all the various things in our environment.

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Health Stuff TO Know provides digestible health & medical news from doctors. Expert information on the day's top health news. Dr. Puja Uppal is a board-certified physician. Dr. Uppal is Chief Medical Officer of Health Stuff TO Know & ThinkHealthy

Michigan State

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