Posted: 25/02/2015 at 07:17
I wouldn't worry about using the compost on the veg patch - spread it during a dry spell and let it dry out - leptospirosis can only survive in water - then dig it in. However I would use gloves when loading it into the barrow and spreading it - just to be on the safe side. Leptosiprosis is caught by infected water entering fresh wounds in the skin so it's actually quite hard to contract. It cannot infect plants. Gardeners and compost heaps have been around for ages, and rats have been around for even longer.
And I'm not under estimating the dangers - when I was a child there was a boy in the next village who died of Weil's Disease - the children had been playing in a ditch that had an outlet from the local cesspit and of course it was home to a colony of rats - after he died the village was put on the main sewer. This was back in the 1950s in very rural Suffolk.
We were all warned about the dangers - the dangers are in water where rats are present - standing water, ponds, ditches, drains, canals and riverbanks. In the garden make sure you keep birdbaths clean and change the water regularly, don't allow rainwater to accumulate in buckets and containers in the garden etc, keep water butts covered etc and if you have a cut on your hands wear sturdy rubber gloves when gardening. And if you have rats in the garden take steps to get rid of them, they're not cute