As of May 30, 2019, 27 people infected with the outbreak strain of Salmonella Typhimurium have been reported from 17 states.
Illnesses started on dates from October 22, 2018 to April 8, 2019. Ill people range in age from 2 to 95 years, with a median age of 14 years. Fifty-five percent are female. Of 17 people with information available, 2 (12%) have been hospitalized. No deaths have been reported.
In interviews, ill people answered questions about animal contact in the week before they became ill. Of 20 people interviewed, 18 (90%) reported contact with hedgehogs before becoming ill. Ill people reported buying hedgehogs from various sources, including pet stores, breeders, or online.
The outbreak strain of Salmonella Typhimurium was identified in samples collected from 10 hedgehogs in Minnesota, including 5 hedgehogs from the homes of five ill patients. A common source of hedgehogs has not been identified.
Regardless of where hedgehogs are purchased, these animals can carry Salmonella germs that can make people sick. Hedgehog owners should always follow steps to stay healthy around their pet.