North America 12/18/13: We’ve all had questions about tick bites, tick identification, tick removal, tickborne diseases, tick habitat, seasonal information about ticks, tick-bite prevention, and the relationship between ticks, deer and rodents. These are some of the topics addressed in the FAQ section of the University of Rhode Island’s TickEncounter Resource Center‘s web site. Dr. Thomas N Mather (a.k.a. the TickGuy) serves as director of URI’s Center for Vector-Borne Disease and its TickEncounter Resource Center. There’s nothing else I need to add here, but if you ever expect to have a tick-related question, you need to bookmark this site now. It is the most valuable resource focusing on ticks that I have ever seen.
I am so impressed with the TickEncounter Resource Center, that I have signed Natural Unseen Hazards on as a TickEncounter Prevention Partner. Please visit the center at http://www.tickencounter.org and before you leave the site, bookmark it. If you work or play in the great American outdoors, have outdoor pets, or just step outside once or twice a month to weed your garden or mow your lawn, you’ll be glad you did. Like TickEncounter on Facebook. Follow it on Twitter. Get TickSmart™ Stay TickSafe!
National 12/12/13 cdc.gov: Lyme carditis is a known but rare cause of sudden cardiac death. Lyme carditis can cause heart palpitations, chest pain, light-headedness, fainting, and shortness of breath in addition to the commonly recognized Lyme disease symptoms of fever, rash, and body aches. If you live in an area where Lyme disease is common and have these symptoms, see a healthcare provider immediately. Between November 2012 and July 2013, three young adults who lived in high-incidence Lyme disease regions suffered from sudden cardiac death associated with undiagnosed Lyme carditis. Lyme carditis is a known, but rare cause of death in persons who have Lyme disease. – See http://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/preview/mmwrhtml/mm6249a1.htm?s_cid=mm6249a1_w
Eastern Equine Encephalitis (EEE) & West Nile Virus (WNV):
National 12/16/13 thehorse.com: by Erica Lason – A recent update from the USDA Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) indicates that the nationwide case totals of (horses with) equine West Nile virus (WNV) and Eastern equine encephalitis (EEE) are beginning to steady. According to a Dec. 12 update, 338 cases of WNV and 181 EEE cases have been reported across the country since the start of the year. In early November, the agency reported 296 WNV cases and 177 EEE in the United States since Jan. 1. Horses in at least 40 states have been confirmed positive for WNV so far this year. The APHIS report indicates that Texas (57), Oklahoma (41), and Montana (27) have reported the most equine WNV cases thus far . . . (H)orses in at least 22 states have tested positive for EEE thus far in 2013, the APHIS data indicates. South Carolina (49), Florida (34), and Mississippi (12) have reported the most cases so far this year. – See more at: http://www.thehorse.com/articles/33052/nationwide-wnv-eee-totals-steady-as-winter-approaches#sthash.F2egk8rc.dpuf
Arizona 12/17/13 Santa Cruz County: State officials have issued a Rabies Alert after two skunks found in Tubac on December 2nd tested positive for the virus. A skunk found in Patagonia on November 11th, and another found in Rio Rico on August 23rd were also rabid. – See http://www.nogalesinternational.com/news/game-and-fish-reports-four-rapid-skunks-in-scc/article_c402e6e0-6752-11e3-8994-001a4bcf887a.html
Arkansas 12/16/13 Faulkner County: A stray dog that bit a person in Conway has tested positive for rabies. – See http://www.thv11.com/news/article/291240/2/Rabid-dog-confirmed-in-Conway
Pennsylvania 12/16/13 Warren County: Officials are seeking the identity of a woman who brought an oddly behaving raccoon to the Warren Animal Hospital in Lopatcong Township on November 29th. The woman left no contact information and the raccoon has since tested positive for rabies. – See http://www.nj.com/warrenreporter/index.ssf/2013/12/health_department_still_seekin.html