Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Rats, Humans, Drink Cans, and Leptospirosis

Wash drink cans and bottles
with soap and water before drinking from them
I just received an E-mail message from a friend, warning people to be sure to wash off the top of drink cans before opening them to drink.   I suspected this one may very well be true, but you know how many fake messages warning people about so many things, that prove to be either a mistake, or even a hoax.  So, I went to SNOPES and verified it.  It is was a mix of truth and non-truth..

The story said that a woman in Texas had gone boating and taken along some cans of COKE, which she has apparently neglected to wash before putting them in her refrigerator on her boat.  Later, she drank COKE from one of the cans, also not washing it before drinking.  She ended up in the hospital, and died two or three days later, of Leptospirosis.

This part of the story was false.  The person who died was from Hawaii, and he was working in a warehouse where there was rat urine.  Rat urine can contain Leptospirosis, which can kill dogs as well as humans.

On SNOPES, it said the story had both truth, and fiction involved.  Rat urine is not  toxic to humans, but it certainly can carry Leptospirosis, which can kill. Rodent droppings also can to always spread a deadly type of Pneumonia, as well so, be sure to wash canned drinks before opening them to drink.  It isn't a bad idea to also wash even bottled drinks, as these things, cans and bottled drinks are stored in warehouses for shipping, and rodents can crawl all over the bottles, cans, and the cases they are in, urinating all over.  Even if the containers are inside cases, some of the urine, could possible get onto the drink container.

Like they say, "Better safe than sorry." RIGHT?

Check it out for yourself:  SNOPES report on rats and drink containers


  1. Thank-you Helen! You did the work so that we could be properly are a wonderful person!

  2. Only too happy my friend. You also showed me something in your blog today, and answered a question I have wondered about for more than sixty years.