Can an Animal get Pink Eye, and Then Give it to a Human?

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There are a few different types of Pink Eye, viral, bacterial, allergic, and giant papillary.  All are forms of conjunctivitis.  The conjunctiva is the thin clear membrane over the white part of the eye.  When that membrane becomes inflamed it’s called Pink Eye, or conjunctivitis.

The short answer to your question is yes animals can get pink eye, but no they cannot transfer is easily to a human.   A virus will not transfer from one species to another, at least not in the same way we transfers colds and the flu to one another.  For this reason you don’t need top worry about contracting Pink Eye form an animal and you also don’t have to worry about giving your cat the cold you have.  The virus is designed to infect a specific type of animal.

The giant papillary type of Pink Eye is caused by a foreign object on the eye.  I suppose that object could be transferred from one eye to another, but you would have to push your eye against the animal’s eye and even that probably won’t work.

Allergies are very personal, and animal can’t pass them one to another, a human can’t even pass an allergy on to another person, unless you’re talking in terms of genetics.

So that rules out three out of the four causes of Pink Eye.  The last one I’m afraid can be transferred, although again not very easily.  If it is bacteria causing the Pink Eye and you touch the eye, then touch your own eye the bacteria may be transferred and bacteria are much better at adapting to new surroundings than a virus is.

You won’t catch Pink Eye from an animal (or another human for that matter) without trying very hard to get it, or being extremely unlucky.

For more information on Pink Eye, and how to treat it check this link out.
http://www.steen-hall.com/pink.html

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