Both people and animals carry microbes. Useful microbes, such as those that live in an animal’s gut contribute to keeping them in good health, while harmful microbes can make them ill, just like humans.

Certain microbes can be transmitted from animals to people and vice versa and result in infections, this is called zoonoses. Some infections are restricted to animals, but lead to illness or death. When our pets get an infection, their immune system can help them control the infection without requiring any treatment. When our pets are sick, we must take them to the vet. If the infection requires antibiotic treatment, just like humans, it is important to follow the prescription carefully.

In this lesson plan, students learn that harmful microbes can spread from animal to animal, and from animal to human. They learn that there are a lot of similarities between animal and human health, which is why it is so important to practice good animal hygiene and health practices.

Learning Outcomes:

  • All students will:
  • Understand that what you do to help your pet be healthy is the same as what you need to do for yourself
  • Understand that, just like us, animals should only take antibiotics if necessary and it is important to finish the course
  • Understand that harmful microbes can be found on the farm and that these microbes can spread to humans
  • Understand that by washing our hands and following some basic rules we can reduce the chance of picking up an infection on the farm
  • Most students will:
  • Understand that some microbes can be transmitted from animals to humans and vice versa

Activities Include:

  • Starter Activity:
  • Class Discussion
  • Main Activity:
  • Memory Game
  • Extension Activities:
  • Animal Quiz
  • Poster
  • Farm Fun Game

Curriculum Links:

  • Science:
    • Working scientifically
    • Living things and their habitats
    • Animals, including humans
  • English:
    • Reading and comprehension
    • Spoken language
    • Health and prevention