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Am J Public Health. 1995 November; 85(11): 1559–1561.
PMCID: PMC1615702

Pet ownership among persons with AIDS in three Florida counties.


Interviews were conducted among 408 adults with acquired immunodeficiency syndrome at three local health departments to determine the proportion who owned pets, their perceived attachment to their pets, and the proportion who were informed about zoonoses. Nearly half (187, or 46%) were living with pets, most commonly dogs (64%), followed by cats (38%), fish (15%), birds (8%), reptiles (3%), and rodents (2%). Most pet owners (81%) reported an attachment to their pet. Only 10% were informed of zoonoses, albeit some incorrectly. Health care providers should recognize the high pet ownership rate among persons infected with human immunodeficiency virus and correctly inform their patients of strategies to sustain a low zoonotic disease incidence.

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Selected References

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  • Wallace MR, Rossetti RJ, Olson PE. Cats and toxoplasmosis risk in HIV-infected adults. JAMA. 1993 Jan 6;269(1):76–77. [PubMed]

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