Can You Catch a Cold From Your Pet?
Your runny-nosed cat licks you on the face and the next day you have the sniffles. Did you get it from your pet? Not likely, experts say. There are some diseases you can catch from your pet, called "zoonoses," but most viruses and upper respiratory infections aren't transmittable to humans. We carry different germs from those that inhabit our pets. But, although zoonoses are rare, there's at least one you should be aware of. It's called toxoplasmosis, and it can be transmitted from cats to people. Pregnant women should be especially careful around cats, because if they contract this disease, it can cause birth defects.