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The following were the authorís conclusions based on the results of a study reported in 1976 comparing blood lead concentrations of children and dogs in 83 low-income suburban Illinois families. These conclusions are still valid in 2000.
1) The most likely sources of exposure to lead in the environment for both dogs and children, are lead based paint and soil contaminated with lead. A history of pica (eating non-food substances) increases the likelihood of lead exposure in both species. A dog with a BLC of diagnostic significance indicates probable lead contamination in the home environment. Children who share this environment are expected to be similarly exposed.
2) A veterinarian who diagnoses lead poisoning in a family pet has a responsibility to report this exposure to a local public health agency. If there are children in the home, they can be screened for lead poisoning and corrective action taken, if necessary.