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“They saved my life:” West Bend Man is recovering after he contracted a rare infection from dog saliva

WAUWATOSA (CBS 58) – Greg Manteufel is recovering after he had portions of his arms and legs amputated after he contracted a rare bacterial infection from a dog’s saliva.

“When Greg had come in he had developed a severe bloodstream infection with rare bacteria capnocytophaga,” said Dr. Patrick Hettinger, plastic surgeon with Froedtert.

Capnocytophaga is a common bacteria found in the saliva of dogs and cats but rarely leads to illness. 

Surgeons amputated parts of his arms and legs when he lost circulation in those areas. 

“They are a great team I will tell you that, they saved my life,” said Manteufel.

It’s been a long road to recovery but he’s now been out of the hospital for two weeks.

“The star of the show is Greg. He’s had nothing but the most positive attitude out of any patient I have ever met and he’s approached this with a fight that I don’t think I’ve ever seen any patient,” said Dr. Hettinger.

According to doctors, once his skin and wounds heal he can get nasal and upper lip reconstruction which will be done in stages. He will also be fitted for leg and arm prosthetics.

Manteufel's goal is to get back to walking and driving again.

“I don’t doubt he will be able to drive a car, that will be a relatively easy goal for him to achieve along with the walking,” said Dr. David Del Toro, physical medicine and rehabilitation with Froedtert.

Despite everything that’s happened, Manteufel’s views on dogs haven’t changed.

“I will never stop loving dogs you know because of what happened to me and I wouldn’t anyone else to either,” said Manteufel.

If you'd like to donate to Greg and his family, click here

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