However, after doctors conducted several tests, they discovered Manteufel had actually picked up a infection from the bacteria capnocytophaga, which is commonly found in dog and cat saliva.
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Dr Silvia Munoz-Price, an infectious disease specialist with Froedtert and the Medical College of Wisconsin, told WITI that Mr Manteufel's case is an extremely rare occurrence and that pet owners need not panic. The amputations were necessary after the infection caused Manteufel's blood pressure to drop drastically, which severely reduced blood flow to his limbs and led to tissue death.
The bacteria can be transmitted to humans through bites, licks, or even close proximity with the animal - seeping into the skin even without a cut or scrape.
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"There's no choice. We have no choice but to be positive and make the best of it", said Dawn Manteufel, who had used all her vacation days from her job as a correctional officer at Washington County Jail in West Bend. Doctors were forced to amputate his legs through the kneecap, and damage to his hands necessitates amputation of fingers. Doctors had to amputate both legs through the knee caps.
Infection can usually be treated effectively with antibiotics and is recommended for a minimum of three weeks. When that wasn't enough either, doctors had to remove half of both forearms as well. Manteufel also spent his entire life around dogs, which makes the blood infection all the more surprising.
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"It took a week and they were taking his legs", Dawn Manteufel said.
"This infection in his blood triggered a very severe response on his body".
The Manteufel family has created a GoFundMe page to raise money for prosthetic limbs for Greg. More than 99-percent of the people who have dogs will never have this issue.
"He just kept saying, 'Take what you need, but keep me alive, ' and they did".
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