Hedgehogs can carry Salmonella germs in their droppings while appearing healthy and clean.
Investigators identified the outbreak strain in three hedgehogs in two sick people's homes in Minnesota. These germs can easily spread to the animals' bodies, habitats, toys, bedding, and any surfaces where they live.
As of Wednesday, the federal health agency reported 11 cases of infection from eight states.
One death from the outbreak, which began in October, was reported in California.
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Symptoms of salmonellaA person infected with salmonella can experience diarrhea, fever, and stomach cramps 12 to 72 hours after being exposed to the bacteria.
'Don't kiss or snuggle hedgehogs, because this can spread salmonella germs to your face and mouth and make you sick, ' the CDC says.
Last month, more than 200 people from across the United States fell ill, 84 of them hospitalized, from a salmonella outbreak linked to raw turkey products that prompted a second voluntary recall. If not treated immediately and properly with the right antibiotics, the salmonella infection could prove to be deadly at rare occasions.
The CDC estimates salmonella causes about 1.2 million illnesses, 23,000 hospitalizations, and 450 deaths each year in the U.S. The CDC recommends against letting these pets wander freely in areas where you prepare food.
When possible, clean hedgehog habitats, toys, and supplies outside the house.