Tag Archives: Dogs

FLORIDA WOMAN diagnosed with first locally acquired case of DENGUE FEVER this year ~ NEW MEXICO WOMAN contracts TULAREMIA ~ RABIES report from CT, NY & NC.

miamidade2

Florida 07/09/14 FL Dept of Health/Miami-Dade County: Media Release – Officials have confirmed the first locally acquired case of Dengue Fever in the county so far this year. The individual has fully recovered. – See http://www.dadehealth.org/public/PUBLICnewsarticle.asp?newsID=2219&typeID=&news_type=Press+Releases

Author’s Note: According to Local10 News, the individual is a 50-year-old woman, and there were 23 confirmed cases of locally acquired dengue in Florida last year. – See http://www.local10.com/news/dengue-fever-case-confirmed-in-miamidade-county/26864992

Tularemia:

ico_TularemiaNew Mexico 07/10/14 krwg.org: State officials today confirmed a case of tularemia in a 65-year-old female resident of Bernalillo County. The woman was hospitalized but has since recovered. At least 7 household pets have also been diagnosed with tularemia so far this year, 4 dogs and 3 cats from Santa Fe, Bernalillo and Los Alamos counties. – See http://krwg.org/post/serious-illness-found-people-and-pets-new-mexico

Rabies:

6183687956_0905f1bf96_oConnecticut 07/09/14 New Haven County: A 3-month-old gray tabby kitten that bit two people has tested positive for rabies. The kitten was found screeching and acting strangely on a lawn along Hickory Road in Derby on July 5th. About ten others have had direct contact with the kitten’s saliva and other body fluids, and at least three dogs were also exposed. – See http://wtnh.com/2014/07/09/several-come-in-contact-with-rabid-kitten/

help7689New York 07/10/14 Erie County: Steve Goodwin of Buffalo is looking for the owner(s) of a pit bull that attacked his dog on July 6th in the Nottingham Woods area of Delaware Park, near Lincoln Parkway. Goodwin grabbed the pit bull by the mouth to free his dog. which was being bitten on the throat. Now his concern is whether or not the pit bull has been vaccinated for rabies. The two people the pit bull was with drove away without providing Goodwin with any information. – For more details see http://wivb.com/2014/07/09/couple-searches-for-pit-bull-owner-after-attack/

redfox-aug09North Carolina 07/08/14 Cumberland County: A fox that attacked a woman, her 2-year-old son and their dog on July 6th at the family’s home on Spinnaker Drive in Hope Mills has tested positive for rabies. The family was playing with the dog when the fox attacked first biting the mother, and then attacking the dog. – See video and complete article at http://www.wncn.com/story/25965704/toddler-attacked-by-rabid-fox-in-hope-mills?clienttype=generic&mobilecgbypass

Two COLORADO women attacked by MOOSE ~ CANADA: Two NUNAVUT hunters attacked by POLAR BEAR ~ OKLAHOMA confirms state’s first HANTAVIRUS death in 2014 ~ RABIES report from ILLINOIS.

Bull moose. Courtesy U.S. National Park Service.

Bull moose. Courtesy U.S. National Park Service.

Colorado 05/20/14 cnn.com: by Ed Payne – A couple of Colorado women were recuperating after a moose attack northwest of Denver over the weekend. They were walking their dogs in the city of Black Hawk when the encounter took place, the Gilpin County Sheriff’s Office said. “All of a sudden, I looked up and he was looking right at me and grunted and then charged,” Jackqueline Boron told CNN affiliate KDVR.. “I tried to get up, and he kept coming back and stomping on me.” “When I fell back he got me here,” Boron said, pointing to her arm. “Then, when I curled up forward, that’s when he got me on the head.” The attack left Boron with staples in the back of her head, 15 stitches on her leg and four broken ribs, KDVR reported. Ellen Marie Divis was also stomped on by the moose, but was able to get away to find help. “I heard ‘help me, help me, help me,’” neighbor Chris Hockley told KDVR. “This lady comes running up to her house and she’s covered in blood.” The sheriff’s office issued a warning after the attack. “If you encounter a moose: walk away from it — DO NOT walk towards it; moose are agitated by dogs; make sure your dog is on a leash, control the dog(s) and walk away,” the warning said. – For complete article and video see http://www.cnn.com/2014/05/20/us/colorado-moose-attack/

Polar Bear:

Canada:

Bear-standing-Cranearctic.noss.gov-1Nunavut 05/22/14 nunatsiaqonline.ca: Two hunters are being treated for injuries sustained in a May 22 polar bear attack outside the community of Arctic Bay. Police said local members of the search and rescue team were called to help the two men, who are thought to have been attacked by at least one bear at the floe edge early May 22. The RCMP said the two men were being treated at the local nursing station this morning. Sources in Arctic Bay say the men’s injuries were not serious, and both were able to walk off the sea ice. – For complete article see http://www.nunatsiaqonline.ca/stories/article/65674two_nunavut_hunters_being_treated_after_polar_bear_attack/

Hantavirus:

imagesCAULAVUQOklahoma 05/22/14 Texas County: Health officials have confirmed that a man’s death is due to Hantavirus Pulmonary Syndrome, which is carried by wild rodents. The victim was exposed after dust was stirred up while cleaning a rodent-infested area. – See http://www.sfgate.com/news/science/article/Oklahoma-confirms-hantavirus-death-in-Texas-County-5498427.php

Rabies:

1Illinois 05/20/14 daily-chronicle.com: by Andrea Azzo – Authorities are trying to identify the owners of the pit bull that bit a Sycamore woman’s arm severely enough to require surgery. Part of the urgency behind the search is to determine if she will have to undergo rabies shots. The pit bull’s owners, described as two white men and one Hispanic or Indian man in their 20s, walked away from DeKalb’s new dog park in Katz Park after another couple at the park called the police. The bite victim, Angela Rojas, said her primary focus was to get to the hospital after she was attacked. “It all happened really fast,” Rojas said. “Our goal now is to find out if the dog has his vaccinations.” . . . The dog park where this happened is owned by the DeKalb Park District and is relatively new. Katz Park, 393 W. Dresser Road in DeKalb, opened in December after a five-year lobbying effort to have a local place for dogs to run off-leash. Two signs at the park, one at the entrance, indicate dog owners are responsible for the actions of their dogs and require all dogs must wear current license tags and be up-to-date on shots. – For complete article see http://www.daily-chronicle.com/2014/05/20/dekalb-police-seek-dog-that-bit-woman/a207ony/

Vets in FLOOD AREAS warn DOG owners about LEPTOSPIROSIS ~ Two new LYME DISEASE species found in FLORIDA and GEORGIA ~ COYOTE attacks MAN and DOG in COLORADO ~ RABIES reports from VIRGINIA & CANADA: ONTARIO.

Texas flood zone.

Texas flood zone.

National 05/15/14 rfdtv.com: With all the recent storms and flooding, veterinarians are warning of a disease that spreads through water to both dogs and people. “The most important thing about leptospirosis is it’s a zoonotic disease so dogs can transmit the disease to people,” explained Dr. Ken Harkin, a veterinarian with Kansas State University. Harkin is an expert on leptospirosis. He says the bacterial disease can result in kidney failure and can be deadly to dogs. Symptoms of the disease, for both humans and dogs, include joint pain, weakness, vomiting and possibly jaundice.

image_702798The disease is spread through the urine of wild and domestic animals, and dogs and their owners can be exposed from the same source. “A great example, a few years ago we had a client who brought her dog in here with leptospirosis because their front yard had flooded and the raccoons had contaminated their front yard. Both the husband and the dog ended up in the hospital, obviously different hospitals. He has leptospirosis. The dog had leptospirosis. They both got it from the front yard from the raccoons, but certainly the dog could be a potential source for leptospirosis,” said Harkin. There is a vaccine available. Harkin advises to get your dog vaccinated if you live in an area where this disease is prevalent. – See http://www.rfdtv.com/story/24589387/about-us

Lyme Disease:

Dr. Kerry Clark

Dr. Kerry Clark

National 05/14/14 news-medical.net: Dr. Kerry Clark, associate professor of public health at the University of North Florida in Jacksonville, and his colleagues have found additional cases of Lyme disease in patients from several states in the southeastern U.S. These cases include two additional Lyme disease Borrelia species recently identified in patients in Florida and Georgia. Overall, 42 percent of 215 patients from southern states tested positive for some Lyme Borrelia species. More than 90 cases of Lyme infection were confirmed among patients from Florida, Georgia, North Carolina, Texas and Virginia. Of these southern cases, 69 percent were found to have infection with B. burgdorferi, 22 percent with B. americana and 3 percent with B. andersonii. “For years, medical practitioners and the public have been told that Lyme disease is rare to nonexistent in the southern United States. Our earlier research demonstrated that Lyme disease bacteria were present in animals and ticks in our region,” said Clark. “The more recent evidence shows that the disease is also present in human patients in the South, and suggests that it’s common among patients presenting with signs and symptoms consistent with the clinical presentation of Lyme disease recognized in the northeastern part of the country.” His new paper, “Geographical and Genospecies Distribution of Borrelia burgdorferi sensu lato DNA Detected in Humans in the USA,” was published in the Journal of Medical Microbiology in February. Dr. Brian Leydet in the Department of Pathobiological Sciences at Louisiana State University and Dr. Clifford Threlkeld of Ameripath Central Florida collaborated with Clark in his latest research.

lyme-disease-in-children1The findings are significant for several reasons. They provide additional evidence that multiple Lyme Borrelia species are associated with human disease in the U.S., similar to the situation in Europe. The new findings expand the geographic area where Lyme disease should be considered by medical providers and citizens alike, and suggest that human cases of Lyme disease in the southern U.S. may be much more common than previously recognized. Prior to Clark’s previously published paper in 2013, only one or two Lyme bacterial species, Borrelia burgdorferi and B. bissettii, were recognized to cause disease in North America. Current testing methods and interpretation criteria, designed to detect just one species (B. burgdorferi), may explain many of the complaints involving the unreliability of Lyme disease tests in the U.S. Most of the patients included in Clark’s study were suffering from a variety of chronic health problems, such as fatigue, headaches, muscle and joint pain and cognitive dysfunction. As a result, Clark’s research may help millions of chronically ill people living in areas where Lyme disease wasn’t previously recognized. Called “The New Great Imitator,” Lyme disease is often mistaken for illnesses such as fibromyalgia, chronic fatigue syndrome, lupus, multiple sclerosis, rheumatoid arthritis, Lou Gehrig’s disease (ALS), Parkinson’s, ADHD and even Alzheimer’s. – For complete article see http://www.news-medical.net/news/20140514/UNF-Professor-discovers-2-Lyme-disease-bacterial-species-that-infect-human-patients.aspx

Coyote:

nm_Coyote_090722_mainColorado 05/16/14 9news.com: by Robert Garrison, KUSA – A coyote attacked a man and his dog walking on the CU-Boulder campus Thursday evening. University of Boulder police said it happened in a wooded area, southwest of Foothills Parkway and Arapahoe Avenue. The man reported that after focusing on them for some time, the coyote approached and eventually attacked his dog. The dog was on a leash and the man was able to pull the dog away from the attack. The coyote then lunged at the man, biting his left forearm as he reached out to block the coyote’s advance. The man was able to fend off the attack by kicking the coyote and swinging a stick as it retreated. – For complete article and precautions see http://www.9news.com/story/news/local/2014/05/16/coyote-attacks-man-dog-on-cu-campus/9190271/

Rabies:

help-mdVirginia 05/15/14 James City County: A cat that bit someone and a dog that scratched another person on Wednesday in two county neighborhoods are wanted by the Peninsula Health District for observation to ensure they aren’t rabid. A Siamese cat with blue eyes bit a person on Wednesday in the Black Heath area of Ford’s Colony, according to a press release. The cat has been seen in the area wearing a collar, but it was not wearing one at the time of the incident. The same day a black dog with a “pug-like” face weighing about 40 pounds scratched a person in the 3900 block of Powhatan Parkway in Powhatan Secondary, according to a separate release. The releases indicate, once found, both animals will be confined within their homes for a period of ten days. If they are not found, the victims will have to undergo post-exposure treatment for rabies prevention. Anyone who has seen an animal fitting either description is asked to call the Peninsula Health District – Williamsburg Environmental Health at 757-603-4277. After hours contact animal control at 757-253-1800.- See http://www.vagazette.com/news/va-vg-two-animals-sought-for-rabies-observation-20140515,0,1810898.story

Canada:

help-298x300Ontario 05/15/14 Grey Bruce Health Unit: by Janice MacKay – (Officials hope) to find the owner of a dog that bit a youth in Owen Sound. A young male was walking the large brown boxer type dog behind the Owen Sound Family YMCA on Tuesday at about 2:20pm, when it bit another youth. Health unit staff hope to confirm the dog is not infectious with rabies, so the victim can avoid post exposure rabies treatment. Anyone with information is asked to call 519-376-9420. – See http://blackburnnews.com/midwestern-ontario/midwestern-ontario-news/2014/05/15/owen-sound-boy-hopes-to-avoid-rabies-treatments/

First U.S. case of MIDDLE EAST RESPIRATORY SYNDROME (MERS) confirmed in INDIANA ~ CHIKUNGUNYA now an epidemic in the CARIBBEAN ~ RABIES report from ONTARIO, CANADA.

Dromedary by Trisha. Wikimedia Commons. PD.

Dromedary by Trisha. Wikimedia Commons. PD.

Global 05/02/14 cdc.org: Media ReleaseMiddle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus (MERS-CoV) was confirmed today in a traveler to the United States. This virus is relatively new to humans and was first reported in Saudi Arabia in 2012. “We’ve anticipated MERS reaching the US, and we’ve prepared for and are taking swift action,” said CDC Director Tom Frieden, M.D., M.P.H.  “We’re doing everything possible with hospital, local, and state health officials to find people who may have had contact with this person so they can be evaluated as appropriate.  This case reminds us that we are all connected by the air we breathe, the food we eat, and the water we drink.  We can break the chain of transmission in this case through focused efforts here and abroad.”

OCDC-Logon April 24, the patient traveled by plane from Riyadh, Saudi Arabia to London, England then from London to Chicago, Illinois.  The patient then took a bus from Chicago to Indiana.  On the 27th, the patient began to experience respiratory symptoms, including shortness of breath, coughing, and fever. The patient went to an emergency department in an Indiana hospital on April 28th and was admitted on that same day. The patient is being well cared for and is isolated; the patient is currently in stable condition. Because of the patient’s symptoms and travel history, Indiana public health officials tested for MERS-CoV. The Indiana state public health laboratory and CDC confirmed MERS-CoV infection in the patient this afternoon. “It is understandable that some may be concerned about this situation, but this first U.S. case of MERS-CoV infection represents a very low risk to the general public,” said Dr. Anne Schuchat, assistant surgeon general and director of CDC’s National Center for Immunizations and Respiratory Diseases.  In some countries, the virus has spread from person to person through close contact, such as caring for or living with an infected person. However, there is currently no evidence of sustained spread of MERS-CoV in community settings.

arabian camel 1CDC and Indiana health officials are not yet sure how the patient became infected with the virus.  Exposure may have occurred in Saudi Arabia, where outbreaks of MERS-CoV infection are occurring. Officials also do not know exactly how many people have had close contact with the patient. So far, including this U.S. importation, there have been 401 confirmed cases of MERS-CoV infection in 12 countries. To date, all reported cases have originated in six countries in the Arabian Peninsula.  Most of these people developed severe acute respiratory illness, with fever, cough, and shortness of breath; 93 people died. Officials do not know where the virus came from or exactly how it spreads. There is no available vaccine or specific treatment recommended for the virus. “In this interconnected world we live in, we expected MERS-CoV to make its way to the United States,” said Dr. Tom Frieden, Director, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.  “We have been preparing since 2012 for this possibility.” Federal, state, and local health officials are taking action to minimize the risk of spread of the virus.  The Indiana hospital is using full precautions to avoid exposure within the hospital and among healthcare professionals and other people interacting with the patient, as recommended by CDC. – For complete release and links to more information see http://www.cdc.gov/media/releases/2014/p0502-US-MERS.html

Author’s Note: Researchers have isolated live MERS virus from single-humped camels also known as dromedaries, and almost 75% of the camels in Saudi Arabia have tested positive for prior exposure to the MERS virus. However, even though camels are suspected to be the primary source of infection for humans, the exact routes of direct or indirect exposure remain unknown.

Chikungunya:

carphaWestern Hemisphere 05/01/14 Caribbean Basin: The head of the Caribbean Public Health Authority (CARPHA), Dr James Hospedales, has declared the Chikungunya virus has reached epidemic proportions in the Caribbean. “By definition this is an epidemic since it represents an unusual number of cases of this problem where we would never have it before,” Dr Hospedales told the Caribbean Media Corporation (CMC). The mosquito-borne illness was first detected in the Caribbean in December 2013, in St Martin, and last week Antigua and St Vincent and the Grenadines became the latest countries to declare an outbreak. According to Dr Hospedales, as of April 28, there were 4,108 probable cases in 14 countries across the region. . . . . To date the Chikungunya virus has been confirmed in Anguilla, Aruba, Virgin Islands, Dominica, Dominican Republic, French Guiana, Guadeloupe, Martinique, St Barthelemy, St Kitts and Nevis, St Lucia, St Vincent and the Grenadines, St Maarten (Dutch) and St Martin (French). – For complete article see http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/latestnews/Chikungunya-now-an-epidemic-in-the-Caribbean

Rabies:

Canada:

HelpCardOntario 05/01/14 Bruce County: Yet another dog biting incident is reported in the area. The Grey Bruce Health Unit is asking for your help in tracking down the owner of a dog involved in a biting incident in Chesley. It happened Wednesday at about 9 PM. A man was attacked by a dog while walking on the Chesley Rail Trail near the cemetery. The dog was loose and was not being watched by anyone. The Health unit says the dog is described as large and dark-coloured. Staff of the Grey Bruce Health Unit need to confirm that the dog is not infectious with rabies. By verifying the health of the dog, the victim can avoid receiving the post-exposure rabies treatment. If you have any information related to this incident, please contact the Grey Bruce Health Unit at 519-376-9420. – See http://www.bayshorebroadcasting.ca/news_item.php?NewsID=65812

BOBCATS reported to be attacking DOGS in BRITISH COLUMBIA park ~ NEW MEXICO confirms HUMAN case of PLAGUE ~ HANTAVIRUS suspected in six VIRGINIA infections, two fatal ~ Notable RABIES reports from NY, NC, RI & VT.

Bobcat. Courtesy U.S. Dept. of Interior, Bureau of Land Management.

Bobcat. Courtesy U.S. Dept. of Interior, Bureau of Land Management.

Canada:

British Columbia 04/23/14 cbc.ca: Hikers in Squamish are reporting unusual and violent confrontations with bobcats around Alice Lake Provincial Park, according to WildSafeBC, a program run by the British Columbia Conservation Foundation. “It’s definitely the first time we’ve heard of numerous encounters of bobcats going for dogs,” said coordinator Meg Toom, in an interview with CBC Radio’s Rick Cluff on The Early Edition. g_vancouver9977dToom said in the nine years she’s worked in Squamish, bobcat attacks have never been an issue and that typically they eat small rodents and rabbits . . . Reports have been coming in to conservation officers of other violent bobcat encounters, and some dogs have even been left with stitches. “It’s looking like a territorial situation” said Toom. “We have more people coming into the area, more dogs off leash, and as you put more and more people into the trails network you’re going to have more encounters.” Conservation officers have posted signs in the park and have been warning hikers to beware of the animals. It remains unclear if the attacks are being carried out by a single or multiple bobcats. – For complete article, photos and map see http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/british-columbia/bobcat-attacks-hiker-s-dogs-near-squamish-b-c-1.2618833?cmp=rss

Plague:

imag0490resizeNew Mexico 04/26/14 the globaldispatch.com: Health officials have confirmed the first case of human plague of the year in the state and in the United States in a male adult from Torrance County. Confirmatory testing is being conducted and an environmental investigation will take place at the man’s home to look for ongoing risk to others in the surrounding area. Plague is an infectious disease caused by the bacterium Yersinia pestis. It is found in animals throughout the world, most commonly rats but other rodents like ground squirrels, prairie dogs, chipmunks, rabbits and voles. Fleas typically serve as the vector of plague. Human cases have been linked to the domestic cats and dogs that brought infected fleas into the house. People can also get infected through direct contact with an infected animal, through inhalation and in the case of pneumonic plague, person to person. Yersinia pestis is treatable with antibiotics if started early enough.

There are three forms of human plague; bubonic, septicemic and pneumonic.

  • Bubonic plague: This is the most common form. In this form, the bacteria enter the body through the bite of an infected flea or rodent. Here the bacteria infect the lymphatic system. After a few days to week, the person will experience fever, chills, weakness, and swollen lymph glands. These are called buboes. In the U.S., bubonic plague is sporadic, primarily in the West. Typically, there are around 10 cases annually in this country. Untreated bubonic plague is fatal about half the time.
  • Septicemic plague: This form is also contracted from a flea or rodent bite. Sometimes it appears subsequent to untreated bubonic or pneumonic plague. It involves bloodstream dissemination to all areas of the body. Buboes do not occur. Symptoms are endotoxic shock and disseminated intravascular coagulation. Untreated septicemic plague is nearly always fatal.
  • Pneumonic plague: Probably the most serious form of plague and it’s when the bacteria infect the lungs and cause pneumonia. It is contracted when the bacteria is inhaled (primary) or develops when bubonic or septicemic plague spreads to the lungs.

Hantavirus:

hantavirus.cautionVirginia 04/25/14 Pulaski County: Two people have died and four others were hospitalized after an unidentified illness occurred in a small group including a family of five in Snowville and a close friend. Health officials suspect Hantavirus, which can be contracted from exposure to the urine or droppings of infected rodents. The family had been cleaning a long-vacated mobile home near their residence. – See http://www.timesdispatch.com/news/latest-news-ap/official-dead-hospitalized-due-to-illness/article_8371d8d8-ccca-11e3-900d-0017a43b2370.html

Rabies:

help7689New York 04/25/14 Columbia County: Health officials are searching for a person who may be been exposed to rabies by picking up a dead deer from the front yard of a Claverack home on Friday. The owner of the home on County Route 16 in Hollowville had shot and killed the deer Thursday evening after seeing it disoriented, stumbling into trees and a fence. State Department of Environmental Conservation officials were scheduled to pick up the carcass the next morning, but it was already gone. A silver pickup truck was seen around the home at the time the deer disappeared. Health officials are concerned the deer may have been infected with rabies, a neurological disease that is uniformly fatal unless treated, or another serious disease that could threaten anyone who had contact with the animal or ate its meat. Information about the whereabouts of the deer should be brought to the sheriff’s department’s attention at 828-3344. – See http://www.timesunion.com/local/article/Officials-Deer-scavenger-may-face-rabies-5430348.php

North Carolina 04/25/14 Guilford County: A cat found on Alderwood Drive in Greensboro has tested positive for rabies after being in contact with a person and three other cats. http://www.timesunion.com/local/article/Officials-Deer-scavenger-may-face-rabies-5430348.php. – See http://www.news-record.com/news/article_70f00602-cc8f-11e3-9be9-0017a43b2370.html

KONICA MINOLTA DIGITAL CAMERARhode Island 04/25/14 Providence County: A cat, believed to be a stray, that attacked a Lincoln resident in the vicinity of Lower Road has tested positive for rabies. Two other individuals were also exposed to the virus and at least two people have started post-exposure rabies treatments. The cat is described as “brown with tiger stripes” and has been seen with three other black, grey and orange tiger-striped cats also believed to be strays. Anyone who may have been in contact with these animals should seek immediate medical advice. – See http://www.providencejournal.com/breaking-news/content/20140425-cat-in-lincoln-tests-positive-for-rabies.ece

pitt-county-racoon-tests-positive-rabiesVermont 04/27/14 Chittenden County: A raccoon that attacked a Burlington woman in her driveway on Adams Court without provocation is still at large in the area and is thought to have rabies. The woman was taken to a local hospital where she received 14 stitches to close wounds on her leg, hands and arms. She is being treated for potential exposure to the rabies virus as a precaution. In the meantime, area residents are being cautioned. – For video and complete article see http://www.wcax.com/story/25354079/scary-raccoon-attack-ends-in-emergency-room

ALASKA veterinarian says non-native DOG TICKS becoming major concern ~ HANTAVIRUS case confirmed in COLORADO ~ FLORIDA confirms HORSE positive for EEE ~ RABIES reports from COLORADO & IOWA.

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Alaska 04/20/14 newsminer.com: by Tim Mowry – When Linda Roberts told friends she was bitten by a tick while sleeping two years ago, they thought she was crazy. Everybody knows there aren’t any ticks in Alaska, they told her. When Roberts discovered a tick on her dog this week while giving it a bath, she felt vindicated. Disgusted, but vindicated. Roberts plucked the parasite off her dog, a little, white, fluffy American Eskimo named Angel, and put it in a Ziploc bag. The next day, she took it to Mt. McKinley Animal Hospital, where veterinarian Dr. Ben Kuhn confirmed that it was indeed a tick. “He was very surprised,” Roberts said of Kuhn’s reaction. “He’s been here for two years and hasn’t seen any sign of ticks.” Next, Roberts brought the tick in a baggie to the News-Miner. “This is news,” Roberts said, holding up a small Ziploc baggie with the tick, still alive, inside. “… I want to warn people what can happen to their pets.” Finally, Roberts took the tick to the Alaska Department of Fish and Game office on College Road and showed it to veterinarian Dr. Kimberlee Beckmen.

Rabbit or Hare Tick

Rabbit or Hare Tick

The discovery wasn’t news to Beckmen, though. The sole veterinarian for ADFG, Beckmen is well aware there are ticks in Alaska and there always have been. Ticks on small mammals like snowshoe hares, squirrels, lemmings, voles and birds are endemic to Alaska, she said. “I’ve been working for the department for 12 years, and from day one, I’ve had ticks coming in,” Beckmen said. “We’ve always had ticks on wildlife.” As it turned out, Beckmen identified the tick Roberts plucked from her dog as haemahysalis leporispalustris, otherwise known as the common rabbit tick, or as it’s called in Alaska where there are no rabbits, the hare tick. It is one of only two ticks, the other being the squirrel tick, that is native to Alaska. Hare ticks are commonly found on snowshoe hares in the spring and can carry a flu-like disease called tularemia, which can be spread to dogs, cats and even humans via a scratch or saliva. Pretty much every spring, a handful of dogs and cats around Fairbanks

Squirrel Tick

Squirrel Tick

are infected with tularemia as a result of picking up or sniffing a snowshoe hare that’s infected, Beckmen said. “It’s kind of an annual thing,” Beckmen said. While hare ticks prefer snowshoe hares as hosts, it’s not uncommon to find them on dogs or cats. Squirrel ticks are even more common on pets in Alaska, Beckmen said. “If a hungry tick can’t find a hare or a squirrel to get on and a dog or cat comes by, it’s going to suck on whatever mammal it can get a hold of,” she said.

I

American Dog Tick

American Dog Tick

n the past three years, Beckmen has found at least two other types of ticks that have taken up residence in the Last Frontier and appear to be here to stay: the American dog tick and brown dog tick. Both ticks have been found on dogs or cats that have never left the state, a sign the parasitic arachnids can — and are — surviving in Alaska. “They’re established, they’re breeding and they’re staying here,” Beckmen said. That’s bad news for pet owners. Ticks can and do carry and transmit diseases from animals to humans. The most common are tularemia, Lyme disease, Q fever and Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever. Currently, only tularemia and Q Fever are present in Alaska. Wildlife disease specialists also say the establishment of new ticks in Alaska poses a risk to all sorts of wildlife, from caribou to coyote to fox to moose to Sitka black-tailed deer to wolves. “It is a big concern because the populations of animals up here haven’t been exposed to these tick-borne diseases,” said Dr. Robert Gerlach, the state’s head veterinarian. “If we get a tick that comes up and now can survive in this environment, we can get disease spread in a wildlife or the human population we’re not used to, which could have drastic results. “Once you get a tick population started in a wildlife species, they continually spread disease through that wildlife population,” he said.

Brown Dog Tick

Brown Dog Tick

The two dog tick species found in Alaska were discovered as a result of a recent enhanced tick surveillance program by ADFG to look for moose winter tick, a serious threat to moose that has been found in the Yukon Territory. Using public service announcements and interdepartmental communication, Beckmen put word out to the public and to wildlife biologists around the state three years ago that she was looking for ticks. As a result, between June 2011 and October 2013 Beckmen collected 89 ticks representing 48 separate infestations.

Rocky Mountain Wood Tick

Rocky Mountain Wood Tick

The ticks came mostly from dogs, but also humans, cats, hares and marten. While no moose ticks were found, there were 10 cases of American dog ticks and 13 cases of brown dog ticks discovered on dogs or humans around the state, including Anchorage, Denali Park, Fairbanks, Juneau, Sitka, Valdez and Willow. One of the infestations involved a boarding kennel in Fairbanks — Beckmen declined to name it — that was, and still is, infested with brown dog ticks, which are the only tick in North America that lives indoors and are especially hard to eradicate, Beckmen said. Other cases involved houses that were infested with brown ticks. “We had one dog a person brought in that had 70 or 80 ticks,” she said. “The house is infested. There are ticks all over the pets and kids.”

Lone Star Tick

Lone Star Tick

In addition, specialists in a Georgia lab that Beckmen sent the tick specimens to identified two other non-native species of ticks found in Alaska — the Rocky Mountain wood tick was found on dogs in Anchorage and Sitka, while the lone star tick was found on dogs in Eagle River and Fairbanks. It’s just a matter of time and climate change before those ticks, and possibly others, gain a leg-hold in Alaska, Beckmen said. – For complete article see http://www.newsminer.com/news/local_news/fairbanks-incident-serves-as-reminder-that-ticks-live-in-alaska/article_245d85cc-c860-11e3-9fbd-0017a43b2370.html

Hantavirus:

Hantavirus2Colorado 04/22/14 krextv.com: by Travis Khachatoorian – A Garfield County resident is officially the first confirmed case of hantavirus in the area since 2012. There are very few details released on the confirmed case at this point. Officials haven’t released information on the status of the patient, or even what city the patient caught the virus in. “Usually what happens is you’re cleaning something, and the virus gets put into the air, and you breath it in, and you don’t really think much of it,” said immunization coordinator for Garfield County Danielle Yost. “Then usually anywhere from a couple days to a few weeks later you start getting flu like symptoms that rapidly deteriorate into the inability to breathe.” Symptoms include muscle aches, fatigue, high fever, dizziness, headaches, chills, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea and abdominal pain which can eventually lead to death. Garfield County officials are concerned enough to call for citizen precautions, especially since it’s the spring cleaning season. The county Public Health Department is warning all residents to know how to protect themselves from this potentially deadly disease. The virus is usually carried in the Western Slope by the deer mouse. Officials urge any resident’s cleaning out garages, or other areas with rodent droppings or urine, to not sweep the mess but rather pour a bleach and water mix over the affected area. Always wear protective gloves and scoop up the mess with a paper towel. The first case of the mysterious disease started back in 1993 in the four corners region of Colorado, and the hantavirus has now spread across the western hemisphere. The CDC reports a 36 percent mortality rate for those with the disease. “There is no vaccine, no medication for it, your body basically has to fight it off on its own,” said Yost.

Eastern Equine Encephalitis (EEE):

encephcycFlorida 04/23/14 Marion County: A horse stabled in the vicinity of Sparr has tested positive for infection with EEE. Area residents have been provided with tips and advice to protect them from the mosquitoes that spread the disease. – See http://www.ocala.com/article/20140423/ARTICLES/140429861

Rabies:

Colorado 04/23/14 Pueblo County: A Pueblo woman says a dog bit her at a local coffee shop and the dog’s owner vanished. The woman is now worried she might get sick with rabies. It happened on Sunday at the Starbucks off 4th Street, near Abriendo Avenue. Jane Garnett was enjoying a cup of coffee with a friend. She says when she came out of the Starbucks’ bathroom, she noticed two long haired dachshunds inside the store. She says they were both on leashes with a dark-haired woman and a young boy. Suddenly, one dog lashed at her. “They were just standing there in line, or around the line to get coffee and the dog bit at my pants and then bit at me in the café,” said Garnett. Garnett says when she tried confronting the woman, she vanished. Garnett says the bite made her bleed. “I feel like she should have stayed around to see how I was or whether I needed her information. I feel like she should have taken more responsibility for it,” said Garnett. Garnett says she’s now worried she could get rabies. “I hope the woman comes forward and tells me or not if the dog has been vaccinated.” The Pueblo County Health Department and Animal Services are working together to find out who the dog owner is. Garnett just wants to know if the dog is current on its vaccinations. If you know who the dog owner is, you’re encouraged to contact either agency. The Health Department says rabies symptoms most often develop between one to three months after the person is infected. We also spoke to road_sign_need_helpStarbucks. They say they only allow service dogs inside the store. – For photos see http://www.kktv.com/news/headlines/Dog-Bites-Woman-at-Coffee-Shop-Owner-Flees-256287611.html

Iowa 04/24/14 Scott County: Ten-year-old Annalee Bargmann may have to get rabies shots now after she was bit by a dog. The young girl was playing with a tennis ball Tuesday evening, April 22, 2014, near Garfield Elementary School in Davenport, Iowa, when she dropped the ball.  When she reached down to pick up the ball, a dog ran to the end of its retractable leash and bit Annalee on the leg. No one noticed she was bit until after she left the fields, because she hid the bite mark under a blanket. She said she loves animals and didn’t want to get the dog in trouble. She later told her grandmother about the incident, and her grandma called Annalee’s parents. “We immediately started looking around the park for a person matching the description,” said Annalee’s mother, Christina Bargmann. “We took her to the doctor the next day and she had a tetanus shot, but they told us she would have to get the rabies vaccination to be safe.” The dog that bit Anna was described as a rust-colored Dachshund.  The dog’s owner was described as heavy-set man in his 30s or 40s, with dark brown hair. He also may have had a small, white fluffy dog with him as well. If the family doesn’t hear from the dog owner by Friday, they will have to take Annalee to get rabies vaccinations. They ask anyone who has information on the dog and it’s owner to please contact Davenport Animal Control at 563-388-6655. – For video see http://wqad.com/2014/04/24/girl-hides-dog-bite-now-needs-rabies-shots/

NEW YORK ecologist says OPOSSUMS are very efficient TICK killers ~ TEXAS reports first case of HANTAVIRUS in 2014 ~ RABIES reports from CA, PAx2, VAx2 & CANADA: ONTARIO.

Opossum. Photo by Cody Pope. Wikimedia Commons.

Opossum. Photo by Cody Pope. Wikimedia Commons.

National 04/22/14 newstimes.com: by Robert Miller – At night, when you catch sight of an opossum in your car headlights, you are allowed to think, “That is one ugly little animal.” But what opossums lack in looks, they make up in originality. They’re America’s only babies-in-the pouch marsupial. They’re a southern species — proper name Virginia opossum — that’s adapted to New England winters. They’re one of the oldest species of mammal around, having waddled past dinosaurs. They eat grubs and insects and even mice, working over the environment like little vacuum cleaners. “They really eat whatever they find,” said Laura Simon, wildlife ecologist with the U.S. Humane Society. And they’re an animal whose first line of defense includes drooling and a wicked hissing snarl — a bluff — followed by fainting dead away and “playing possum.” “They are just interesting critters,” said Mark Clavette, a wildlife biologist with the state Department of Energy and Environmental Protection. And now ecologists have learned something else about opossums. They’re a sort of magnet when it comes to riding the world of black-legged ticks, which spread Lyme disease.

Dr. Richard Ostfeld.

Dr. Richard Ostfeld.

“Don’t hit opossums if they’ve playing dead in the road,” said Richard Ostfeld, of the Cary Institute for Ecosystem Studies in Millerton, N.Y. Ostfeld is forest ecologist and an expert on the environmental elements of infectious diseases like Lyme disease. Several years ago, scientists decided to learn about the part different mammals play in the spread of the ticks and the disease. They tested six species — white-footed mice, chipmunks, squirrels, opossums and veerys and catbirds — by capturing and caging them, and then exposing each test subject to 100 ticks. What they found, is that of the six, the opossums were remarkably good at getting rid of the ticks — much more so

Blacklegged Tick.

Blacklegged Tick.

that any of the others. “I had no suspicion they’d be such efficient tick-killing animals,” Ostfeld said. Indeed, among other opossum traits, there is this: They groom themselves fastidiously, like cats. If they find a tick, they lick it off and swallow it. (The research team on the project went through droppings to find this out. All praise to those who study possum poop.) Extrapolating from their findings, Ostfeld said, the team estimated that in one season, an opossum can kill about 5,000 ticks. – For complete article see http://www.newstimes.com/news/article/Robert-Miller-Opposums-killers-of-ticks-5413872.php

Hantavirus:

hantavirus1542Texas 04/13/14 Swisher County: Health officials have confirmed the state’s first case of hantavirus reported this year. The exposure is believed to have occurred in a rodent-infested barn when dust was stirred up. It was reported that the individual recovered. Hantavirus infection has a mortality rate of 38% according to the CDC. – See http://www.theglobaldispatch.com/texas-reports-first-hantavirus-case-of-2014-2014/

Rabies:

Author’s Note: Beginning with this post, Rabies Reports will be limited to those that are in some way unusual and/or of particular importance in terms of service to the general public.

Help_button_2California 04/19/14 Yolo County: Animal services officials seek the public’s help in finding a dog that bit a child in a park in Dunnigan. The incident occurred about 7:30 p.m. April 11. A 3-year-old child was with his mother in a park near the 29000 block of Main Street when the youngster attempted to approach a small dog running loose in the park and was bitten, according to county news release. The mother told animal services officials that she had not seen the dog in the area before and has not seen it since the child was bitten. Animal services employees also have been unable to find the animal. The dog was described as a small gray and white terrier type. The mother did not recall seeing a collar on the dog. Identifying the dog to verify current rabies vaccination could help spare the child post-exposure rabies treatment. Anyone with knowledge of the incident, or the location of dog or its owner, is asked to call the Yolo County Sheriff’s Office, Animal Services Section at (530) 668-5287, or email animal.bite@yolocounty.org. – See http://www.sacbee.com/2014/04/18/6336279/yolo-officials-seek-dog-that-bit.html

5731289-very-cute-child-with-a-cat-in-armsPennsylvania 04/22/14 Montgomery County: A stray cat found on East Fifth Avenue in Collegeville has tested positive for rabies. Anyone who has been bitten, scratched or had saliva exposure to a stray cat should seek medical advice and also call the Montgomery County Health Department at 610-278-5117. This is the third confirmed case of rabies in the county in 2014. – See http://www.timesherald.com/general-news/20140422/rabid-cat-found-in-collegeville

3610192083_22eaf9db7aPennsylvania 04/17/14 Lancaster County: A Penn Township woman is receiving post-exposure rabies treatments as a precaution after being bitten by a stray, black cat on April 16th in the 1000 block of White Oak Road in Manheim. The cat remains at large. – See http://lancasteronline.com/news/local/woman-undergoing-rabies-shots-after-being-bit-by-cat/article_ecc54d9e-c633-11e3-88e6-001a4bcf6878.html

400px-RK_0808_278_Marmota_monax_groundhog_ReinhardKraaschWCVirginia 04/15/14 Fairfax County: A groundhog that fought with a dog in the 900 block of Welham Green Road in Great Falls on April 6th has tested positive for rabies. The dog was quarantined. – See http://mclean.patch.com/groups/police-and-fire/p/dog-quarantined-after-tangling-with-rabid-hedgehog-in-great-falls

Wildlife-GrayFoxVirginia 04/15/14 Newport News: A man in the city’s Lakeside neighborhood who was bitten by a fox on April 14th has begun post-exposure rabies treatments as a precaution. The fox bit into his arm and wouldn’t let go until he started slamming his pickup truck door on it. The fox was not captured and remains at large. – See http://www.wvec.com/news/Woman-bit-by-fox-in-Newport-News-255385821.html

Canada:

untitled (2)Ontario 04/15/14 Grey Bruce Health Unit: Officials are asking for your help in finding the owner of a dog involved in a biting incident in Walkerton. It happened last Friday morning, when a girl walking to school near the corner of Hinks Street and Johnstone Boulevard was bitten by a dog being walked by a man. The man kept on walking. The dog is described as medium-sized, mixed breed, with black and white markings. Staff of the Grey Bruce Health Unit need to confirm that the dog is not infected with rabies. By verifying the health of the dog, the victim can avoid receiving the post exposure rabies treatment. If you have any information related to this incident, you are asked to contact the Grey Bruce Health Unit at 519-376-9420. ­ – See http://www.bayshorebroadcasting.ca/news_item.php?NewsID=65460

 

FLORIDA woman attacked by BLACK BEAR ~ TICK taken from CALIFORNIA park carrying TULAREMIA ~ IOWA reports first case of CHRONIC WASTING DISEASE in a wild DEER ~ RABIES reports from CT, GAx2, MA, NH, NJx2, NYx2, NC, TXx4, VT, VA & WI.

Black bear. Courtesy freepik.com.

Black bear. Courtesy freepik.com.

Florida 04/13/14 Seminole County: Officials are investigating a black bear attack that occurred in Lake Mary on April 12th around 8 p.m. Firefighters say they were called to a home at 1900 Brackenhurst Place after one of five bears rooting through trash at the residence attacked a woman identified as Terri Franna who was taken to a local hospital for treatment and later released. Wildlife officials say they have since put down four bears that did not appear to be fearful of humans, which is considered dangerous. The director of the state’s bear management programs said bears are looking for food this time of year and, if they can’t find it in your neighborhood, they’ll move on. – See http://www.clickorlando.com/news/woman-attacked-by-bear-in-lake-mary/25453094

Tularemia:

th777389546ddCalifornia 04/10/14 San Diego County: Officials have issued a warning to hikers and others who work or play in the great outdoors that a tick taken during routine monitoring in Los Penasquitos Canyon Preserve, an urban park in San Diego, has tested positive for tularemia, also known as “rabbit fever”. Ticks in the U.S. that can transmit the F. tularensis bacteria include the dog, wood and long star varieties. Deer flies can also transmit the bacteria. Tularemia can be very difficult to diagnose. It is a rare but potentially serious disease. During 2001-2010, a total of 1,208 cases were reported from a total of 47 states, but more than half of the total number of cases were in MO, AR, OK, MA, SD and KS. – See http://poway.patch.com/groups/around-town/p/county-urges-public-to-protect-against-ticks-after-tularemia-find-poway

Author’s Note: For more information about Tularemia see http://www.cdc.gov/tularemia/index.html

Chronic Wasting Disease:

CWD-TitleIowa 04/09/14 IA Dept of Natural Resources: Media Release – The first case of chronic wasting disease (CWD) in a wild Iowa deer has been confirmed. The deer was reported as harvested in Allamakee County during the first shotgun season in early December. The Iowa Department of Natural Resources is currently working to obtain as much information as possible about the infected deer to implement its CWD response plan. “We have been testing for CWD in Iowa’s deer herd for more than a decade and are optimistic, given the extensive data we have collected, that we have caught this early,” said Chuck Gipp, DNR director. “The next step will be to focus our monitoring efforts in the area where the animal was harvested and work closely with local landowners and hunters to gather more information.” said Gipp.

Deer infected with CWD.

Deer infected with CWD.

CWD is a neurological disease affecting primarily deer and elk. It is caused by an abnormal protein, called a prion that attacks the brains of infected animals, causing them to lose weight, display abnormal behavior and lose bodily functions. Signs include excessive salivation, thirst and urination, loss of appetite, progressive weight loss, listlessness and drooping ears and head. The only reliable test for CWD requires testing of lymph nodes or brain material. There is currently no evidence that humans can contract CWD by eating venison. However, the National Institute of Health and the Center for Disease Control and Prevention recommends that hunters do not eat the brain, eyeballs or spinal cord of deer and that hunters wear protective gloves while field dressing game and boning out meat for consumption. Prior to the positive detection in Iowa, CWD had been detected in every bordering state.

Rabies:

batinlaundryConnecticut 04/07/14 New London County: A bat captured in a Gales Ferry home on April 4th in the Eagle Ridge Drive area of Ledyard has tested positive for rabies. – See http://groton.patch.com/groups/around-town/p/bat-captured-in-gales-ferry-tests-positive-for-rabies-groton

Georgia 04/11/14 Hall County: Officials have issued a Rabies Alert for the Persimmon Tree Road area after a raccoon that was in contact with a dog tested positive for the virus. This is the fifth confirmed case of rabies found in the county this year. – See http://www.gainesvilletimes.com/section/6/article/98112/

Georgia 04/10/14 Henry County: A raccoon that was killed by a dog on April 2nd in the City of McDonough has tested positive for rabies. Officials have issued a city-wide quarantine. – See http://www.myfoxatlanta.com/story/25214076/henry-county-issues-rabies-quarantine-88e779r0efor-mcdonough#axzz2ydBtnx7b

Massachusetts 04/07/14 Middlesex County: A skunk found near the Framingham/Southborough town line has tested positive for rabies. – See http://framingham.wickedlocal.com/article/20140407/NEWS/140406953

4541357140foxNew Hampshire 04/11/14 Rockingham County: A fox that attacked two children at the Don Ball Park in Derry on April 10th has tested positive for rabies. The animal knocked a boy down, and then bit a 5-year-old girl after she came down a slide. Police and wildlife officials finally cornered the animal in nearby woods and killed it, but in the interim the fox also attacked a porcupine and dog. – See http://www.wmur.com/news/fox-that-attacked-children-tests-positive-for-rabies/25438202

New Jersey 04/11/14 Monmouth County: Health officials have issued a Rabies Alert for the Middletown area after two raccoons tested positive for the virus this week. The first was found in the vicinity of Michael Drive off Nutswamp Road, and the second was found in the vicinity of Essex Street and Bray Avenue in the northern section of the township. – See http://www.ahherald.com/newsbrief/local-news/17351-rabies-alert-in-middletown

111009110345_Raccoon3 - CopyNew Jersey 04/09/14 Hunterdon County: A raccoon captured in the vicinity of Brown Street in Flemington has tested positive for rabies. The animal might have been in contact with several stray cats in the area. – See http://www.nj.com/hunterdon-county-democrat/index.ssf/2014/04/raccoon_cuaght_in_flemington_t.html

New York 04/11/14 Niagara County: A raccoon killed by two dogs on Stone Road in Hartland has tested positive for rabies. – http://wivb.com/2014/04/11/niagara-co-reports-first-rabies-case-of-2014/

rabidcatNew York 04/07/14 Oneida County: A man who tried to help what he thought was an injured cat was bitten on the hand last week when he picked the animal up. The cat later tested positive for rabies and the victim is receiving post-exposure treatment. – See http://www.wktv.com/news/local/Oneida-County-man-exposed-to-rabies-by-injured-cat-254233751.html

GA_Gray_Fox_6869North Carolina 04/10/14 Cumberland County: A fox that attacked two unvaccinated dogs on April 9th outside their owner’s home on Lake Upchurch Road in Parkton has tested positive for rabies. The owner of the dogs is being treated for potential exposure to virus when he grabbed the fox and broke its neck. – See http://www.fayobserver.com/news/local/article_3ca95f9e-f7c3-5939-99fa-678cb761daaf.html

Texas 04/11/14 Wichita County: A second skunk has tested positive for rabies in the city of Wichita Falls within two weeks. The first was in the southern part of the city while this latest case is in the northern sector. – See http://www.timesrecordnews.com/news/2014/apr/10/second-case-rabies-wichita-falls/

2195804032_bb25565f77-copyTexas 04/11/14 Young County: Two skunks found in the City of Graham have tested positive for rabies. One was found near Pioneer Cemetery and the other in the northeast part of the city. – See http://www.grahamleader.com/ci_25546497/rabies-cases-reported-graham

Texas 04/10/14 McClellan County: A skunk found in the 600 block of Regina Drive in Hewitt on April 7th has tested positive for rabies. – See http://www.kcentv.com/story/25206822/skunk-tests-positive-for-rabies-in-hewitt

Texas 04/08/14 Bell County: A skunk that scratched a dog in the 4500 block of Lonesome Dove in Killeen has tested positive for rabies. – http://www.kxxv.com/story/25197702/rabid-skunk-spurs-caution-in-bell-county

lottaraccoons - CopyVermont 04/11/14 Chittenden County: Four raccoons trapped in Burlington and South Burlington in the last ten days have all tested positive for rabies. – See http://www.boston.com/news/local/vermont/2014/04/11/animal-rabies-found-near-vermont-largest-city/OTbD8fi44nBSYDmPkeRrDO/story.html

Rabid-cat-4-11-14 VaVirginia 04/11/14 Virginia Beach: A stray cat that was following children waiting for the school bus in the 1200 block of Warwick Drive has tested positive for rabies. Anyone who came in contact with the cat is advised to seek medical advice immediately. – See http://wavy.com/2014/04/11/cat-found-near-school-bus-stop-tests-positive-for-rabies/

help7689Wisconsin 04/09/14 Marathon County: Officials are looking for the owner of a large Rottweiler-type dog that bit a seven-year-old boy around 7:30 p.m. on April 8th near the corner of S. 5th Avenue and West Street in Wausau. The dog was wearing a dark green or black harness and was being walked by a woman with brown, shoulder length hair. She is believed to have been in her 30s and was wearing running pants and a bright pink shirt. Anyone with information should call the health department at (715) 849-7785. – http://www.wsaw.com/home/headlines/Health-Dept-Searching-for-Dog-to-Prevent-Boy-from-going-through-Rabies-Shots-254575171.html?ref=171

 

World traveler hospitalized in MINNESOTA with LASSA FEVER ~ UTAH confirms case of HANTAVIRUS ~ FOLLOW-UP REPORT: OREGON’s celebrity WOLF OR-7 may soon exit stage ~ RABIES reports from AZ, AR, CT, FL, GA, MD, NJ, NCx2, PA, SCx2 & VA.

Rat. Bing free use license.

Rat. Bing free use license.

Minnesota 04/04/14 medpagetoday.com: by Michael Smith – A man is in stable condition in a Minnesota hospital with Lassa fever after returning from a trip to West Africa, where an outbreak of Ebola virus is now raging. The Minnesota Department of Health said the man flew to Minneapolis-St. Paul on March 31 and soon after his arrival visited a physician. Because of his travel history and symptoms, the doctor suspected a possible hemorrhagic fever. The man was admitted to the hospital with fever and confusion and CDC testing confirmed a diagnosis of Lassa fever on April 3, the department and the CDC said in separate statements. “This imported case is a reminder that we are all connected by international travel,” CDC Director Tom Frieden, MD, said in a statement. “A disease anywhere can appear anywhere else in the world withinhours.”

Air routes connecting to and from Africa.

Air routes connecting to and from Africa.

Lassa fever is rarely seen in the U.S., with only seven cases recorded, the latest in 2010, according to the CDC. The agency reported that preliminary information suggests the man flew from West Africa to New York City and on to Minneapolis on another flight. The agency did not say where in West Africa the trip started. The CDC is working with public health officials and airlines to identify anyone who might have had close contact with the infected person, although Lassa fever is not easily spread from human to human. “Casual contact is not a risk factor for getting Lassa fever,” said Barbara Knust, DVM, a CDC epidemiologist in the lab that tested the patient’s blood for Lassa virus. “People will not get this infection just because they were on the same airplane or in the same airport,” she said in a statement.

RatthumbnailCANGBSFFThe Lassa virus is carried by rodents and transmitted to humans through contact with urine or droppings, but in some cases people can catch it from another person through direct contact with blood or bodily fluids, the mucous membranes, or sexual contact. “Given what we know about how Lassa virus is spread to people, the risk to other travelers and members of the public is extremely low,” Martin Cetron, MD, of the CDC’s Division of Global Migration and Quarantine, said in a statement. Between 100,000 and 300,000 cases of Lassa fever occur in West Africa each year, with up to 5,000 deaths. – For complete article see http://www.medpagetoday.com/InfectiousDisease/GeneralInfectiousDisease/45120?isalert=1&uun=g632000d1042R5753012u&utm_source=breaking-news&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=breaking-news&xid=NL_breakingnews_2014-04-04

Author’s Note: For more information on Lassa Fever see http://www.cdc.gov/vhf/lassa/

Hantavirus:

imagesCAULAVUQUtah 04/04/14 kcsg.com: The Southwest Utah Public Health Department (SWUPHD) has confirmed a case of hantavirus infection in Kane County. Hantavirus incidences are rare in the five-county region, with the last case being reported four years ago in Iron County. The virus is found in the droppings, urine, and saliva of rodents, usually deer-mice. “This time of year, a lot of people start spring cleaning in places where rodent droppings are found; such as sheds, barns, and cabins,” says Dr. David Blodgett, SWUPHD Health Officer. “If hantavirus is present, it can be inhaled and cause respiratory illness within a few weeks.” Hantavirus infection, called Hantavirus Pulmonary Syndrome, starts with flu-like symptoms followed by difficulty breathing and can be life-threatening. Treatment includes intensive hospital care to deal with the respiratory distress. Hantavirus is not known to spread person-to-person. – For complete article and precautions see http://www.kcsg.com/view/full_story/24877415/article-Hantavirus-Infection-in-Southwest-Utah?instance=more_local_news1

Follow-Up Report:

Wolf OR-7:

(See previous posts dated 11/12/11, through 12/13/13)

graywolfNPRphotoOregon 03/29/14 missoulian.com: The wandering wolf dubbed OR-7 has enjoyed well over his 15 minutes of fame. But even with continued public interest, he could soon fade from the spotlight. The Global Positioning System collar that has sent regular electronic pulses to reveal his travels for the past three years has eclipsed its normal life span, and state and federal biologists don’t plan to replace it. “When that collar dies, we’ll never know his fate,” Rob Klavins of the conservation group Oregon Wild told the Mail Tribune newspaper. “But that could be OK. It’s good to have a little mystery in the world.“ The wolf gained celebrity status in 2011 after leaving a pack in northeastern Oregon, days after the state issued a kill order for his father and a sibling for preying on livestock.

wolfMost Oregon wolves on such journeys, called dispersals, have stayed in northeast Oregon or traveled to Idaho. The young wolf headed west with the tracking satellite following his moves as he fruitlessly searched for a mate. He became the first confirmed wolf in western Oregon since the last one was killed under a livestock-protection bounty program in 1937. He then crossed a state line and became California’s only confirmed wolf since 1924. He wandered throughout Northern California and almost traveled into Nevada before retracing his steps to southern Oregon, where he’s spending his time near Mount McLoughlin. The wolf will not be re-collared because biologists prefer to collar breeding pairs or members of packs. Collaring can be dangerous and time-consuming, and biologists would rather collar animals in other packs not sporting GPS collars to get information on their whereabouts and habits instead of an established bachelor like OR-7. – See this article at http://missoulian.com/news/state-and-regional/oregon-wandering-wolf-s-signal-ready-to-fade/article_15a8644a-b6ac-11e3-aef0-001a4bcf887a.html. See 3/22/14 companion article about a group retracing the path of wandering Oregon wolf OR-7 at http://missoulian.com/news/state-and-regional/group-retracing-trek-of-wandering-oregon-wolf-or/article_bad003c8-b121-11e3-bc24-001a4bcf887a.html

Rabies:

a898778rabies-alertArizona 04/04/14 Santa Cruz County: Officials have announced that the entire county is under quarantine after an outbreak of rabies reached record-breaking levels. The quarantine order, effective through December 31st, was issued after 23 positive cases of rabies were reported since January 1st of this year. The county recorded only 12 cases in all of 2013. – See http://www.nogalesinternational.com/news/county-now-under-rabies-quarantine/article_1a9ef380-bc0e-11e3-a7b0-0019bb2963f4.html

323rabies-skunk_mediumArkansas 04/01/14 Pulaski County: A skunk that was observed behaving strangely near the 800 block of Buttercup in North Little Rock‘s Levy neighborhood has tested positive for rabies. – See http://www.arkansasmatters.com/story/d/story/rabies-warning-in-north-little-rock/59358/GB4-wF9jxECoaYCA8PI3Gw

Connecticut 04/02/14 Hartford County: A raccoon that fought with two vaccinated dogs on Rogers Lane in Enfield on March 26th has tested positive for rabies. – See http://www.journalinquirer.com/towns/enfield/raccoon-tests-positive-for-rabies-in-enfield/article_84f6f590-ba68-11e3-acb9-001a4bcf887a.html

17858296_BG1Florida 03/29/14 Hernando County: A raccoon that fought with a vaccinated dog on Sun Hill Lane in Brooksville has tested positive for rabies. – See http://tbo.com/health/rabid-raccoon-reported-in-east-brooksville-20140329/

Georgia 04/02/14 Hall County: A raccoon that fought with a dog on Bowen Bridge Road in the Clermont area is the fourth wild animal in the county to test positive for rabies so far this year. – See http://www.accessnorthga.com/detail.php?n=273283

17907533_240X180Maryland 03/31/14 Prince George’s County: A fox removed from the 4000 block of Woodrow Lane in Bowie on March 21st has tested positive for rabies. – See http://laurel.patch.com/groups/politics-and-elections/p/fox-tests-positive-for-rabies-in-bowie

raccoonrabid113524New Jersey 04/01/14 Atlantic County: A raccoon removed from the backyard of a resident in the 4000 block of Ridge Avenue in Egg Harbor Township is the third animal to test positive for rabies in the township so far this year. – See http://www.shorenewstoday.com/snt/news/index.php/egg-harbor-twp/eht-general-news/50867-third-case-of-rabies-found-in-egg-harbor-township.html

rabiesAlert521d4-1North Carolina 04/04/14 Cleveland County: Eighteen people are being treated for potential exposure to rabies after a Good Samaritan in the town of Lawndale adopted one of two puppies that were abandoned and were wandering along Elam Road. The adopted puppy began acting sickly and when brought to a clinic was diagnosed with and tested positive for the virus. Making matters worse, the other puppy ran away. Officials are warning area residents who might have been in contact with either of the puppies to seek immediate medical attention. – See http://www.wsmv.com/story/25158263/stray-puppies-leave-cleveland-co-neighbors-owing-thousands-of-dollars-in-medical-bills

320x240North Carolina 03/28/14 Cumberland County: A bat found between Pamalee Drive and Murhison Road in Fayetteville has tested positive for rabies. This is the 3rd case of the virus to be confirmed in the county this year. – See http://www.fayobserver.com/news/local/article_1026ca27-0ce1-51f8-9ed6-2af733ba68ac.html

Rabid-Fox---26690055Pennsylvania 04/02/14 Montgomery County: A fox that was killed by a resident’s unvaccinated dog on the 2000 block of Weber Road in Worcester Township has tested positive for rabies. – See http://www.timesherald.com/general-news/20140402/montgomery-county-health-department-confirms-fox-positive-for-rabies-in-worcester

Cat-RabiesSouth Carolina 04/01/14 Laurens County: A stray cat found in or near the town of Gray Court has tested positive for rabies. At least one person has been advised to seek treatment for possible exposure to the virus. – See http://www.independentmail.com/news/2014/apr/01/cat-exposes-person-rabies-laurens-county/

South Carolina 03/29/14 Aiken County: A man in his 20s has been advised to seek post-expsosure treatment for rabies after a raccoon entered his home on Limerick Drive in Aiken and scratched his face. The raccoon has since tested positive for the virus. – See http://www.aikenstandard.com/article/20140329/AIK0101/140329342/1004/man-recommended-to-undergo-treatment-after-rabies-exposure

crittersVirginia 04/04/14 Prince William Health District: A cat found on March 31st near Forest Glen Road in Woodbridge between Horner Road and Hylton Avenue has tested positive for rabies. And in Nokesville, four raccoons and a skunk have tested positive for the virus since July of 2013. A Rabies Alert has been issued for both communities. – See http://www.insidenova.com/health/health-district-warns-residents-about-rabies-in-woodbridge-nokesville/article_a439195c-bc3d-11e3-947e-0019bb2963f4.html

Six new cases of HEARTLAND VIRUS confirmed in MISSOURI and TENNESSEE ~ COYOTE/WOLF hybrid spotted in SOUTH CAROLINA ~ RABIES reports from AZ, FL, MA, NJ, NY, NC, OK, SC & TX.

Lone Star Tick. Courtesy CDC.

Lone Star Tick. Courtesy CDC.

Missouri and Tennessee 03/27/14 cdc.gov: The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in collaboration with health officials in Missouri and Tennessee have identified six new cases of people sick with Heartland virus: five in Missouri and one in Tennessee. The new cases, discovered in 2012 and 2013, are in addition to two discovered in 2009 and are described today in CDC’s Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report. Heartland virus was first reported in two northwestern Missouri farmers who were hospitalized in 2009 with what was thought to be ehrlichiosis, a tick-borne disease. However, the patients failed to improve with treatment and testing failed to confirm ehlrlichiosis. Working with state and local partners, CDC eventually identified the cause of the men’s illness: a previously unknown virus in the phlebovirus family now dubbed Heartland virus.
CDC-LogoOngoing investigations have yielded six more cases of Heartland virus disease, bringing to eight the total number of known cases. All of the case-patients were white men over the age of 50. Their symptoms started in May to September and included fever, fatigue, loss of appetite, headache, nausea, or muscle pain. Four of the six new cases were hospitalized. One patient, who suffered from other health conditions, died. It is not known if Heartland virus was the cause of death or how much it contributed to his death. Five of the six new cases reported tick bites in the days or weeks before they fell ill. Nearly all of the newly reported cases were discovered through a study conducted by the Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services and CDC are actively searching for human cases at six Missouri hospitals.

 

Range of Lone Star Tick. CDC map.

Range of Lone Star Tick. CDC map.

CDC has been working closely with the Missouri and Tennessee state health departments and other federal agencies to advance understanding of Heartland virus disease by learning more about the patients who were infected, their illness and their exposure to ticks. CDC seeks to determine the symptoms and severity of the disease, where it is found, how people are being infected, and how to prevent infections. CDC studies to date have shown Heartland virus is carried by Lone Star ticks, which are primarily found in the southeastern and eastern United States. Additional studies seek to confirm whether ticks can spread the virus to people and to learn what other insects or animals may be involved in the transmission cycle. CDC is also looking for Heartland virus in other parts of the country to understand how widely it may be distributed. – For complete article including precautions see http://www.cdc.gov/media/releases/2014/p0327-heartland.html
Coyote/Wolf Hybrid:

coywolf-hybridSouth Carolina 03/27/14 greenvilleonline.com: by Charles Sowell – The coyote/wolf hybrid that scares deer hunters throughout South Carolina has been found at the Savannah River Site by U.S. Forestry Service personnel doing a fawn mortality rate study, officials said last week. According to Charles Ruth, with the state Department of Natural Resources, fawn mortality at the SRS was found to be 70 percent, much higher than previously thought, and of that higher rate, 80 percent was found to be caused by coyotes. That number, while higher than expected, was not nearly the surprise that a forest service study of coyote DNA that found one coyote/wolf hybrid — a coyote with Canadian grey wolf DNA, said John Kilgo, a research biologist with the forest service. “It was noticeably bigger than even the largest coyote,” he said. “So we took its DNA and a picture. We were stunned when the results came back with Canadian grey wolf in the animal’s background.”
9661542-wolf.coyote.hybrid“We don’t know how it got here,” Kilgo said. “It may have wandered down from the north, but that is not likely. More likely is that it was imported by fox hunters, or someone else who wants to use the animal for sport and then it escaped.” The hybrid animal comes from female coyotes who bred with male grey wolves in Canada and then crossed the border into the United States, said Ruth. The coyotes are also known to breed with domestic dogs. “We don’t think these animals pose any risk to humans,” said Kilgo. “And we only found one with wolf DNA out of the 500 or so animals tested, so we are treating it as an isolated incident.” – For complete article and photo see http://www.greenvilleonline.com/article/20140327/ENT/303270050/Coyote-wolf-hybrid-spotted-Savannah-River

Rabies:

800px-Striped_Skunkby_www.birdphotos.comWC-2Arizona 03/28/14 Santa Cruz County: Officials plan to request a quarantine situation next week after the number of animal rabies cases in the county rose to 22 this year. Another seven cases were reported in November and December of 2013. Nearly all have been infected skunks, but one case in Tubac involved a bat. Tubac has had 13 cases since November of last year, four cases were reported in Nogales, four in Sonoita, three each in Rio Rico and Patagonia, and two in Patagonia Lake Estates. – See http://www.nogalesinternational.com/news/officials-sound-alarm-over-rabies-outbreak/article_fb4eadb6-b688-11e3-b1e3-001a4bcf887a.html
Racoon15642Florida 03/27/14 Hernando County: A raccoon that fought with a vaccinated dog in the Sun Hill Lane vicinity of Brooksville has tested positive for rabies. – See http://www.wtsp.com/story/news/local/2014/03/27/brooksville-raccoon-positive-rabies/6969033/
bobcat_ME_IFWMassachusetts 03/26/15 Worcester County: A bobcat that attacked a 35-year-old blind horse in its barn on Grove Street in Upton on March 15th has tested positive for rabies. – See http://uptondaily.com/2014/03/26/rabid-bobcat-attacks-upton-horse/
WashDFWNew Jersey 03/26/14 Morris County: A raccoon that fought with two dogs in the Belrose Court area of Long Valley on March 7th has tested positive for rabies. – See http://newjerseyhills.com/rabid-raccoon-report-in-long-valley-a-warning-to-pet/article_34f6e254-b503-11e3-8790-0019bb2963f4.html
EasternRedFox_VA_WilliamH-Majoros2New York 03/28/14 Herkimer County: A fox that attacked a man at his residence in the Newport area in the past week has tested positive for rabies. – See http://www.littlefallstimes.com/article/20140328/NEWS/140329223
RaccoonDEC_NY.govNorth Carolina 03/27/14 Iredell County: A raccoon captured in the vicinity of the 400 block of East Monbo Road in Troutman has tested positive for rabies. – See http://www.statesville.com/news/article_ccca6f3e-b624-11e3-a142-001a4bcf6878.html
World+News+10-1Oklahoma 03/27/14 Dewey County: A skunk that tested positive for rabies has prompted officials to issue a Rabies Alert in the county. This is the seventh case of animal rabies reported this year. – See http://www.woodwardnews.net/local/x542465783/Rabid-skunk-identified-in-Dewey-County
raccoon454 - CopySouth Carolina 03/27/14 Horry County: A person is being treated for exposure to rabies after a raccoon tested positive for the virus in the Bakers Chapel community. – See http://www.wbtw.com/story/25091210/rabies-case-investigated-in-horry-county-4th-case-this-year
thumbnailCA0KC8HVTexas 03/28/14 Wichita County: A skunk found in the southeastern part of Wichita Falls has tested positive for rabies. – See http://www.timesrecordnews.com/news/2014/mar/28/rabies/