“Two girls who swam with pet turtles in a backyard pool were among 107 people sickened in the largest salmonella outbreak blamed on turtles nationwide, researchers report. The 2007-08 outbreak involved mostly children in 34 states; one-third of all patients had to be hospitalized. In many cases, parents didn’t know that turtles can carry salmonella,” according to MSNBC. “The American Veterinary Medical Association estimates that the number of pet turtles nationwide doubled from 950,000 in 1996 to almost 2 million in 2006. ‘It’s very easy to think of turtles as being a very gentle and nice pet,’ but many carry salmonella, without showing any signs, said Julie Harris, a scientist at the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the report’s lead author.”
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