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Salmonella Outbreak from Contact with Hedgehogs

EMSL Analytical offers testing services for Salmonella and other foodborne illnesses in our advanced microbiology laboratories.


According to Food Safety News, 14 people in 6 different states have fallen ill from Salmonella poisoning after having direct contact with hedgehogs.

The 14 illnesses have been reported over the course of the past nine months with the first in December of 2011 and the latest recorded illness on August 13, 2012. Illnesses have occurred in the following states: Alabama (1), Indiana (1), Michigan (3), Minnesota (2), Ohio (2) and Washington (5). 

To date there have been no fatal reports linked to this illness, but three victims have been hospitalized. Individuals affected by the illnesses have ranged in age from less than one year old to 62 years old. However, half of the victims were under the age of ten.

Interviews were conducted with ten of the victims who revealed having contact with a hedgehog about a week prior to falling ill. Some individuals also reported purchasing hedgehogs, but from different states throughout the U.S.
Individuals infected with Salmonella typically develop a fever, diarrhea, and abdominal cramps 12 to 72 hours after consumption, and the illness usually lasts 4 to 7 days.

“Most individuals infected with Salmonella recover without treatment; however, young children, the elderly, and those with weak immune systems may develop more severe illnesses where hospitalization is required,” states EMSL’s Vice President of Microbiology and Life Sciences, Jason Dobranic, Ph.D. “EMSL Analytical has the ability to detect Salmonella bacteria and other foodborne pathogens in environmental samples in our advanced microbiology laboratories nationwide.”

For more information about EMSL’s food testing division, please contact EMSL at 800-220-3675, email , or visit or

About EMSL Analytical, Inc.
EMSL Analytical is a full service testing company providing quality lab services under the same private ownership since 1981. Including the corporate lab facility in Cinnaminson, NJ, EMSL Analytical operates over thirty laboratories nationwide in the US and Canada. We provide analytical services for environmental, indoor air quality (IAQ), industrial hygiene, forensics and materials science, consumer products, food safety, PCR, pharmaceutical, asbestos, lead, and radiological samples. The company has an extensive list of accreditations from leading organizations, as well as state and federal regulating bodies.



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