This Couple's Horrifying Facebook Post Shows The Dangers Of Walking Barefoot On Beaches

You thought you could relax and kick your shoes off at the beach, huh? Nope. Danger is everywhere.

Young Canadian couple Katie Stephens, 22, and Eddie Zytner, 25, are warning people to really watch where they’re walking barefoot at the beach after a trip to the Dominican Republic ended with a hospital stay. The two told CTV News that their feet were infested with hookworm larvae after a day walking the shore. The viral Facebook post showing the damage has been horrifying everyone who sees it:

Wow, rare to hear a healthcare story where Canada looks worse than the U.S.

You can see how the hookworms got progressively worse and worse in the photos:

Here it is just days later:

 Zytner told CTVNews that though their feet were itchy pretty much right away, they thought it was nothing at first. 

“For a lot of our trip, we found that we were scratching our feet quite a bit,” he explained. “Sand fleas we had heard about so we kind of assumed it was that at first.”

It wasn’t until they returned home and the blisters started to form that they became worried.

“I had a lot of itchiness during the trip,” said Stephens. “I think I might have complained about it a little bit more that my feet were really itchy, but mine didn’t start swelling and everything until about the Sunday night.”

They went to the hospital, and were seen by two different doctors who didn’t recognize the condition. Zytner was send home with nothing more than bandages. It wasn’t until four days after their return home that a hospital doctor who had seen hookworms in Thailand figured out what the problem was.

The couple was prescribed ivermectin, a medicine that isn’t licensed in Canada. They had to send in a special request for it—and their health insurance allegedly told them their hookworm wasn’t severe enough to justify ordering the meds.

 Zytner’s mother drove to Detroit to pick some up for 88 Canadian dollars, which is more inconvenient than expensive. Though to Canadians, spending money on meds probably seems crazy.

They’re both recovering slowly, though they still have to use crutches to get around.

They say they’re sharing their story so more doctors see the condition. 

Hookworms can be caught by stepping in dirt or sand touched by an infected animal’s feces. You might think you’d know if you are standing in poop, but the world is a litter box. 

To prevent it, wear shoes outside, wash your hands before eating, and make sure your own pets are treated. This is definitely not the way that anyone wants to end a vacation.

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Everyone Loves This Dog Walking With A Bag Of Dog Food In Texas

Over the weekend and continuing into this week, the people of Houston and its outskirts have been battered by an unrelenting storm. Conditions are extremely serious, with deep floods displacing hundreds of thousands of people. 

“We are not out of the woods yet,” Elaine Duke, the acting Homeland Security secretary, said, according toThe Washington Post. “Harvey is still a dangerous and historic storm.”

Conditions are terrifying, and seeing the difficulties of the city under the circumstances has been heartbreaking. That may be why this photo of a self-reliant dog has gotten so much traction. Taken in a town called Stinton, near Corpus Christi, the image shows waterlogged streets and one lone, resilient pup trekking through the street with an entire bag of dog food:

It turns out the dog’s name is Otis, and this is a story with a happy ending. Otis belongs to the grandson of a man named Salvador Segovia. Segovia’s grandson and his parents left Stinton when the storm hit looking for shelter, but Segovia stayed and agreed to check on Otis. He told the Boston Globe that he left Otis in a screened in porch with food and water, but noise from the storm must have scared him so he burst out. Poor pooch!

‘‘I stuck my head out yelling and yelling, and no Otis,’’ Segovia said. ‘‘The following morning, I got out and kept yelling, circled the block and everything, and nothing. We didn’t know where Otis was.’’

Tiele Dockens, who snapped the viral pic, ended up following Otis to see if he was okay, and went with him practically to his front door. She saw Segovia out searching and pointed Otis out to him.

‘‘This lady comes by and tells me, ‘Is that your dog coming down the road?’” Segovia said. ‘‘And I turn around, there comes Otis, and he’s carrying food!’’

Otis then set down the food and took a rest—he’d had a wild night.

Apparently, Otis is fairly well-known in the small town, and often runs off alone, even stopping in at the local Dairy Queen for a free burger.

‘‘Otis is a smart dog,’’ Segovia said. ‘‘He knows where to go pick up a treat.’’

Segovia thinks Otis got the bag of food at the local lumber and building supply store, because the owners there often feed him.

‘‘I’m thinking he picked up that dog food and he knew where it was,’’ Segovia said. ‘‘Nobody was there to feed him, and he picks up the dog food.’’

May Otis serve as a mascot to Texas in this time of serious trouble. He made it home, and we all hope every citizen of the city will as well.

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