• Bubonic plague is famously responsible for the Black Death.
  • Health officials in county said that both pets and humans can contract the disease through infected flea bites.
  • Experts recommend that people and pets avoid direct contact with wild rodents.

According to health officials, a Colorado house cat was tested for the bubonic disease at the beginning of October. 

It was a positive cat from Evergreen which is less than twenty miles west of Denver. Jefferson County health officials stated that it was the first instance of plague this year in their county. They believe the animal contracted the disease from an unwell rodent (likely a rat). The cat tested positive for the disease on October 29.

“While plague is a serious disease, and cases of animal-borne disease in household pets is never something we like to see, it is normal and expected for some animals to contract plague in Jefferson County each year,” Jim Rada, the director of environmental health services at Jefferson County Public Health, said in a statement. The good news about plague is that antibiotics can be used to treat it quickly. This will prevent severe complications and even death.

The bubonic plague is one of three different types of plague, along with septicemic and  pneumonic. The bubonic disease is spread by the Yersinia parasitis bacteria. This can be found in all parts of the world. Bubonic plague is well-known for its infamous cause, the Black Death. This disease caused millions of deaths across Europe, Africa, and Asia in the 1300s. 

It is not the first year Colorado has faced the plague. The state’s Department of Public Health and Environment reported that the plague was detected in six states and animals in July. One resident aged 10 died from “causes associated with plague”.

Fact check:Case of bubonic plague found in Inner Mongolia (China)

Koalas Chlamydia has been rapidly spreading in Australia’s koalas. They are now being vaccinated.

Health officials in county said that both humans and animals can become infected by infected flea bites. Pets like cats and dogs can also get it by eating an infected rodent or picking up an infected rodent with its mouth. Officials said that the plague can also be fatal to cats if they’re not given immediate antibiotics.

People can take steps to prevent the spread of the plague to their pets and pets, including removing any wild or pet food, putting out trash and using flea treatment products to control the infestation.

“The bottom line is people – and their pets – should avoid contact with any species of wild rodent, especially ones that are sick, dying or already dead,” Rada said. While we know that pets are sometimes unpredictable, pet owners have some options to protect their family members, particularly if the rodent population is close by, Rada said.

Follow Jordan Mendoza Twitter @jordan_mendoza5

Source: USAToday.com


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