Man's legs, hands amputated after contact with dog's saliva

Manteufel has undergone several surgeries to amputate his legs and arms

Harmful bacteria from a dog's saliva gave the Wisconsin man a rare blood infection that forced doctors to amputate, The Washington Post reports .

Greg Manteufel, of West Bend, Wisc., landed in the emergency room last month with what he thought was the flu, Fox 6 Now reported. "Looked like somebody beat him up with a baseball bat", Dawn Manteufel said.

Through a blood test, doctors diagnosed Manteufel with an infection caused by Capnocytophaga canimorsus, a bacteria often found in dog and cat saliva. The disease can cause a very bad sepsis infection, but usually in people who are immunocompromised and usually follows a dog bite. His blood pressure dropped and the circulation in his limbs declined.

Dawn Manteufel said that they are focued on what her husband has left, rather than what was taken away.

The family has since set up a GoFundMe to raise money for the operations and rehabilitation that Manteufel will need, and it's already raised over $10,000.

Dawn told the Post that about the time of her husband's illness he had been around eight dogs, and that any one of them could have licked him.

Manteufel contracted Capnocytophaga canimorsus, but there are other species of the bacteria that cause lesser side effects compared to what he had to go through.

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Manteufel's GoFundMe page states that Capnocytophaga canimorsus is fairly common and grows in the mouths of up to 60 percent of dogs and 17 percent of cats.

The bacteria more often impacts people with a weakened immune system.

If you have one of these conditions and are bitten by a cat or dog, the CDC recommends calling your doctor immediately to describe your animal contact. Dr. Silvia Munoz-Price, an infectious disease specialist with Froedtert Hospital and the Medical College of Wisconsin, told the station the infection got into his blood and "triggered a very severe response in his body". More than 99-percent of the people who have dogs will never have this issue.

He first had to have his feet amputated, then his legs up to the kneecaps, then his hands and portions of his arms.

"He told the doctors, 'Do what you have to do to keep me alive, ' " Dawn Manteufel said.

"Furthermore, all areas of Greg's body and tissue was affected by the bacteria and the sepsis, the [doctors] say his nose will need extensive repairs, which means he will need plastic surgery to rebuild a new healthy nose".

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