Leptospirosis affects numerous animal species, including domestic dogs, but documented transmission to humans is rare. Here, we describe epidemiologically linked cases in a 12-year-old Minnesota boy and his pet dog. While human leptospirosis is often thought of as a disease of tropical locations, this case report describes a rare documented example of local transmission in the northern United States, a region historically not perceived to be at high risk of Leptospira species transmission to humans. This case highlights an unusual presentation, with facial nerve palsy, underappreciated epidemiological risks, and diagnostic challenges of this reemerging infection.
Disclosure: The findings and conclusions in this report are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily represent the official position of the CDC.
Authors’ addresses: Beth K. Thielen and Mark R. Schliess, Division of Pediatric Infectious Diseases, Department of Pediatrics, University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, MN, E-mails: firstname.lastname@example.org and email@example.com. Stacy Holzbauer, Minnesota Department of Health, St. Paul, MN, and Career Epidemiology Field Officer Program, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, St. Paul, MN, E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org. Bethany Templen, M Health Fairview Clinic, Brooklyn Park, MN, E-mail: email@example.com. Ilana J. Schafer, Division of Global Health Protection, Global Health Center, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, GA, E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org. Aileen Artus, American Cancer Society, Atlanta, GA, E-mail: email@example.com. Renee Galloway, Bacterial Special Pathogens Branch, Division of High-Consequence Pathogens and Pathology, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, GA, E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org. Malia Ireland, Minnesota Department of Health, St. Paul, MN, E-mail: email@example.com. Tanya Femrite, Mounds View Animal Hospital, Mounds View, MN, E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Address correspondence to Beth K. Thielen, Division of Pediatric Infectious Diseases, Department of Pediatrics, University of Minnesota, Moos Tower 4-145, 515 Delaware St SE Minneapolis, MN 55455-0357. E-mail: email@example.com