• Salmonella is a bacterium that causes diarrhea in people
  • Salmonellosis enteritis is one of the leading causes of enteric disease in Ontario and occurs mostly during the summer months


  • Sudden onset of headache, fever, abdominal pain, diarrhea and some people may have blood in their stool
  • Nausea and sometimes vomiting
  • Dehydration (especially among the young, the elderly and those with weakened immune systems can be severe cases that may result in hospitalization)
  • The time between swallowing the bacteria and becoming sick ranges between 6-72 hours, usually 12-36 hours in most cases. Symptoms can last from one to two weeks
  • Most people recover without treatment


  • Food or water contaminated by feces of domestic and wild animals, including poultry, swine, cattle, rodents and pets such as iguanas, tortoises, turtles, chicks and other baby poultry, dogs, cats, hamsters, hedgehogs, lizards, snakes, frogs, toads, newts and salamanders
  • Rawhide dog treats have also been a source of salmonella
  • In order to get sick, people must swallow salmonella bacteria with food or drink


  • Keep all food containing meat or dairy either cold, below four degrees Celsius in the refrigerator, or in a cooking appliance at 60 degrees Celsius
  • Cook meats thoroughly above 74 degrees Celsius (whole poultry at 82 degrees Celsius)
  • Thaw meat in the refrigerator and not on the counter (use microwave to thaw quickly)
  • Wash hands often when working with food (especially after working/playing with animals, handling raw meat or even packages containing raw meat)

Cases of salmonellosis must be reported to your local Medical Officer of Health under the Health Protection and Promotion Act.