Increasingly popular raw meat meals for dogs and cats may be full of multi-drug resistant bacteria, posing a serious risk to animals and humans, scientists reported Wednesday.

Three-quarters of samples purchased and tested in Switzerland exceeded recommended limits of bacteria known to cause gastro-intestinal infections, and more than half had bugs impervious to drugs designed to kill them, they reported in Royal Society Open Science.

“It is really worrying that we found EBSL-producing bacteria in over 60 percent of samples,” said first author Magdalena Nuesch-Inderbinen, a researcher at the University of Zurich, referring to an enzyme that renders some antibiotics ineffective.

“They include several types of E. coli which can cause infections in humans and animals.”

 

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