Zoonotic diseases (zoonoses): guidance, data and analysis

The diagnosis, management and epidemiology of zoonotic diseases.

Zoonoses are infections that can pass between animals and humans.

You can get zoonotic diseases through direct contact with animals if you:

  • work with animals
  • have pets
  • have hobbies that involve animals

You can also get some of these diseases from contaminated food or water, or via insects such as ticks.

Zoonotic diseases

Some zoonotic diseases are endemic in the UK, and others are considered ‘exotic. This list includes information on the main reservoirs and routes of transmission, and links to supplementary information for:

  1. zoonotic diseases found in the UK

  2. selected zoonotic diseases exotic to the UK

Investigating and managing risk

Information on how the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) manages incidents of endemic zoonotic diseases in England can be found in the zoonoses contingency plan.


Quarterly surveillance reports for zoonotic infections are published in the Health Protection Report.

Annual reports providing information on cases of zoonotic infections reported in the UK are also published.

Data sources

Updates to this page

Published 1 July 2014
Last updated 2 August 2021 + show all updates
  1. Added link to zoonoses contingency plan.

  2. Added "Raw pet foods: handling and preventing infection"

  3. Added zoonoses report UK for 2015.

  4. First published.