Teenage camper attacked by BEAR in GREAT SMOKY MOUNTAINS NATIONAL PARK ~ PENNSYLVANIA confirms 25% increase in LYME DISEASE cases last year ~ RABIES reports from AL, NC & WI.

Photo courtesy US National Park Service.

Photo courtesy US National Park Service.

Tennessee 06/07/15 citizen-times.com: by Dale Neal – A bear attacked an Athens, Ohio teenager late Saturday in Great Smoky Mountains National Park, pulling the backpacker from his hammock as he slept. Rangers have closed four trails and half a dozen backcountry campsites in the park as bears are actively foraging for food, said Dana Soehn, a park spokeswoman. The boy, 16, was bitten around the head about 10:30 p.m. as the 250-pound bear pulled him from the hammock. He had no food with him, Soehn said. The attack occurred at backcountry campsite 84, about 4.5 miles from Fontana Lake near Hazel Creek. The boy’s father fended off the bear, then applied first aid to his son. They hiked down to the lake, where they woke campers at backcountry site 86, who had a boat. They were ferried across the lake to Cable Cove boat dock, where they were able to call for help. Graham County Rescue EMS transported them to a landing zone, where the teen was flown by helicopter to Mission Hospital about 3 a.m. The teen suffered multiple injuries, including lacerations to the head. He remained conscious throughout the incident and is in stable condition. – For complete article and survey question see http://www.citizen-times.com/story/news/local/2015/06/07/smokies-campsites-closed-bear-attacks-ohio-teen/28647319/

LYME DISEASE:

lyme-awareness5128Pennsylvania 06/10/15 PA State Dept of Health: Media Release – In 2014, the Department of Health recorded 7,400 cases of Lyme disease in the commonwealth, a 25% increase when compared with 5,900 cases in 2013. The increase in cases can be attributed in part to heightened awareness about Lyme disease, better reporting, and enhanced monitoring efforts, particularly in Allegheny County. Pennsylvania leads the nation in reported cases of Lyme disease and a recent study found that blacklegged ticks were found in all 67 counties. = For complete release see http://www.media.pa.gov/Pages/Health-Details.aspx?newsid=217

RABIES:

Alabama 06/08/15 Cherokee County: The state Department of Public Health Rabies.syringehas confirmed a case of rabies in a Great Dane/Labrador mix, which resided in the Cedar Bluff area. It was initially treated at Nichols’ Animal Clinic and it was later determined the animal had contact with a rabid raccoon . . .  The animal had never been to a veterinarian, it had never been vaccinated, and was bitten right under the eye. Six and a half days later, the dog presented with signs of rabies. Dr. Deaton, a local veterinarian, said ” Because it was bitten so close to the eye, it can move a lot more rapidly. It gets in the optic nerve and goes straight to the brain instead o having to move up the peripheral nerves. So it has a direct access to the central nervous system. ” – For complete article see http://www.northwestgeorgianews.com/cherokee_county/domesticated-rabies-case-confirmed-in-cherokee-county/article_54d3ca2a-0e2a-11e5-a866-cf2c2dc6627c.html

feralcat446755g5North Carolina 06/08/15 Rockingham County: Health officials are warning residents after more than two dozen cats were recently exposed to rabies. Animal Control officials picked up a colony of 25 cats Saturday from Settle Bridge Road following the exposure. All the cats were euthanized. The cats were exposed to the virus Thursday by a kitten that turned aggressive and attacked litter mates, county health officials said. A relative took the kitten to a vet on Friday, and the kitten tested positive for rabies on Saturday. Health officials ask anyone who may have been around cats in the Settle Bridge Road area since May 20 to call the Rockingham County health department at 336-342-5163. – See http://www.wxii12.com/news/25-cats-exposed-to-rabies-in-Rockingham-County/33468944

help7689Wisconsin 06/08/15 Dane County: Authorities are looking for a kitten that bit a man who now faces painful and costly injections to prevent rabies if the kitten isn’t found. The Department of Public Health said the man was bitten on Sunday around 3 p.m. at a church in the 3700 block of North Sherman Avenue in Madison. The man was bitten as he tried to pick up the kitten. The kitten is described as a 8 to 12-week-old orange tabby. Anyone with information about this incident is asked to call 608-255-2345 and ask for the animal services officer. – See http://www.channel3000.com/news/Kitten-sought-after-biting-man/33459902

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