- Households with children under 5 years of age should not own "risky" pets. These include reptiles, such as turtles, snakes, or lizards; amphibians, especially frogs; poultry, including chicks, chickens, and ducklings; and rodents, such as hamsters.
- Pregnant women should avoid contact with pet rodents to prevent exposure to lymphocytic choriomeningitis virus, which is a virus that can cause birth defects.
- Pregnant women should avoid adopting or handling stray cats, especially kittens. They particularly should not clean litter boxes to avoid getting toxoplasmosis from them.
- Immune-compromised persons and persons with human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection or acquired immune deficiency syndrome (AIDS) should take extra precautions when choosing and handling pets. Talk to your veterinarian and health care provider to help make this decision.
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