|Can I Volunteer at an Animal Rescue Shelter?
Mar 2, 2012
Dear Dr., I want to volunteer at an animal rescue shelter to help take care of our little "friends". That would include running dogs, cleaning kennels, collecting feces, litter boxes, etc. All animals receive veterinean attention, however when I visited the place today I saw one of the staff there with huge blisters of ringworms. She told me she got infected from one of the cats and that she's taking antibiotics now to treat it (they do wear gloves when working around feces/urine etc but there's always direct contact when playing/petting the animals...). I am a healthy HIV+ on meds (VL=undetectable, CD4>500) - Would it be a bad idea for me to hang around a place like that? Should I abort the whole idea?
| Response from Dr. Henry
Generally should be OK to work at animal shelter with common sense precautions (make sure you are vaccinated properly, use gloves when appropriate-would inform your HIV provider in case there are individual considerations or monitoring that would be necessary. KH
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