Tag Archives: fox

ALASKAN hiker mauled by GRIZZLY sow with cubs ~ CALIFORNIA Western Gray SQUIRREL tests positive for WEST NILE VIRUS ~ WEST NILE VIRUS reports from NE, & TX ~ RABIES reports from CO, FL (2), ME, MD, MA, NJ, PA, & VT (2).

Grizzly. Courtesy U.S. Bureau of Reclamation.

Alaska 07/23/12 sacbee.com: by Lisa Demer – On a private trail above Eagle River Road, high up in the brush where bears are common, a man hiking with his beagle was mauled by a grizzly Sunday afternoon, authorities said. The man suffered cuts to his head, back and leg, said police Sgt. Cameron Hokenson. Medics rushed him to the hospital but authorities said the injuries aren’t life threatening. Police Lt. Dave Parker identified the hiker as Bob Eder, 50, who lives near where the attack occurred. The sow was with three older cubs, said Jessy Coltrane, area biologist for the state Department of Fish and Game,  who toted a shotgun as she checked out the scene with police. The attack appears to have happened when the hiker startled the brown bears in the tall brush, she said. They ran off. “The vegetation on each side is at least 6 feet tall, impenetrable – you can’t see through it,” Coltrane said. She was able to talk with the hiker briefly before he was taken to the hospital. “The one thing I asked him was how close was the bear when you saw it. He said ‘oh, 5 feet.’ She was right there in the bushes essentially, with these cubs,” the biologist said. “It was incredibly unfortunate but a classic defensive attack by a sow with cubs, surprised at very close range.” – For complete article see http://www.sacbee.com/2012/07/23/4650669/man-mauled-by-grizzly-on-alaska.html

Western gray squirrel. Photo by state of California.

California 07/24/12 paloalto.patch.com: by Laura Dudnick – A squirrel found in Menlo Park has tested positive for West Nile virus, becoming the first squirrel in San Mateo County to test positive for the virus this year, the San Mateo County Mosquito and Vector Control announced Monday. The Western gray squirrel, collected July 3, had a low level of West Nile virus, referred to as a “chronic”  infection, according to county officials. The low level indicates the squirrel was not likely infected recently, and possibly acquired the virus last year. Tree squirrels don’t travel long distances, meaning the infection was likely acquired in or near Menlo Park, county officials said. Along with birds including ravens, crows and jays, tree squirrels are highly susceptible to West Nile virus, which is transmitted through the bite of an infected mosquito. – For complete article see http://paloalto.patch.com/articles/squirrel-tests-positive-for-west-nile-virus-in-san-mateo-county-83ba550b

West Nile Virus (WNV):

Nebraska 07/19/12 Hamilton County: A man in his 70s tested positive for WNV according to the Department of Health and Human Services. He was hospitalized and released.  It’s the first positive human case seen so far this season. – See http://dhhs.ne.gov/Pages/Newsroom_Newsreleases_2012_July_WNV2.aspx

Texas 07/22/12 McLennan County: An 80-year-old resident is dead after being infected with WNV and at least five other human cases of the virus have been confirmed, according the McLennan County Public Health District. Another three human cases of WNV are suspected, one of which is a person from Limestone County. – See http://www.kxxv.com/story/19084199/west-nile-leaves-elderly-woman-dead-at-least-5-suspected-cases


Colorado 07/19/12 Fort Collins, Larimer County: A raccoon that was killed by dogs after entering an enclosed yard near East Trilby Road and South Lemay Avenue has tested positive for rabies. It is the first rabid raccoon found on Colorado’s Front Range since 1963. – See http://www.denverpost.com/breakingnews/ci_21114352/rabies-found-first-front-range-raccoon-since-1963

Florida 07/23/12 Callaway, Bay County: A raccoon found south of the intersection of Old Bicycle Road and Betty Louise Drive has tested positive for rabies. – See http://www.newsherald.com/news/rabies-104311-animal-animals.html

Florida 07/20/12 Jacksonville, Duval County: A rabies alert has been issued for an area bordered on the north by Clapboard Swamp, on the south by Clapboard Creek, on the west by Cedar Point Road at Clapboard Creek and east by Cedar Point Road and Boney Road. – See http://www.firstcoastnews.com/news/local/article/265082/3/Rabies-alert-issued-for-Jacksonvilles-Northside

Maine 07/19/12 Clinton, Kennebec County: In the last three months, the animal control officer has handled five confirmed cases of rabies — three on the River Road, one on the Bush Road and one on the Canaan Road — involving a skunk, a fox and raccoons, the town said Thursday in a press release. – See http://bangordailynews.com/2012/07/19/news/mid-maine/rabies-cases-reported-in-clinton/?ref=latest

Maryland 07/20/12 Brunswick, Frederick County: Two raccoons have tested positive for rabies within the last two week. The first was a young, injured raccoon that was found on July 4 along Petersville Road between Greenwood and B Street. The second raccoon was involved in an altercation with dogs on July 18 on F Street. – See http://www.abc2news.com/dpp/news/state/two-raccoons-test-positive-for-rabies

Massachusetts 07/20/12 Spencer, Worcester County: Health officials are warning anyone who may have touched a bat found at Luther Hill Park on Tuesday to consult with their doctor immediately, as the bat had rabies. A 10-year-old child who was bitten by the bat is undergoing treatment, but Health Agent Lee Jarvis said there were reports that several other children may have touched it and could have been exposed to the deadly virus. – See http://www.telegram.com/article/20120720/NEWS/120729957/1116

New Jersey 07/20/12 Andover, Sussex County: A fox that attacked a seven-year-old boy in the driveway of his Wilson Place home has tested positive for rabies. – See http://www.njherald.com/story/19075432/fox-that-attacked-boy-in-andover-confirmed-rabid

Pennsylvania 07/20/12 West Mead Township, Crawford County: Authorities say another raccoon found in the county has tested positive for rabies. It’s the sixth one this year. – See http://meadvilletribune.com/breakingnews/x1236700183/Rabies-cases-continue-to-climb

Vermont 07/21/12 Coventry, Orleans County: A feral cat that attacked four people and a dog at the Coventry Landfill has tested positive for rabies. One victim suffered seven puncture wounds. – See http://www.wcax.com/story/19078180/rabid-cat-attacks-in-northeast-kingdom

Vermont 07/23/12 Shelburne, Chittenden County: A dead bat discovered in the David Park subdivision area has tested positive for rabies. – See http://www.burlingtonfreepress.com/article/20120723/NEWS/307230009/Bat-found-Shelburne-tested-positive-rabies?odyssey=tab|topnews|text|FRONTPAGE&nclick_check=1

RABID BEAVER attacks two young GIRLS swimming in VIRGINIA lake ~ Wildlife Conservancy trail camera snaps rare photo of MOUNTAIN LION roaming MICHIGAN’s UP ~ FOLLOW-UP REPORT: OREGONIAN may lose fingers and toes after contracting BUBONIC PLAGUE ~ EASTERN EQUINE ENCEPHALITIS reports from MA, & NC ~ WEST NILE VIRUS reports from CAx2 ~ RABIES reports from FL, GA, ID, KS, ME, NE, NYx2, NCx2, & PA.

American Beaver. Photo by Steve of Washington, D.C. Wikimedia Commons.

Virginia 07/17/12 delmarvanow.com: Authorities say two young girls are recovering after being bitten by a rabid beaver while swimming in Lake Anna. Louisa County Sheriff’s Maj. Donald Lowe said Tuesday that the 11-year-old and eight-year-old sisters were attacked on Sunday near Sorbie Cove in Louisa. The Spotsylvania County girls have since been released from the hospital.

The Free Lance-Star reports (http://bit.ly/Nw0ohy ) that Lowe said somebody already had shot and killed the beaver by the time the authorities responded to the incident. Police then turned the beaver over to the health department, which confirmed the animal had rabies. Both girls are receiving shots for rabies. Virginia Department of Health officials say it’s just the fourth time in the past decade that a beaver in Virginia has been confirmed to have rabies.

Michigan 07/18/12 detroitnews.com: by Tom Greenwood – A rare daytime photograph of a cougar roaming the woods in the Upper Peninsula is bolstering arguments of wild life experts that the big cats are doing well in Michigan. The Michigan Wildlife Conservancy —a nonprofit organization formed in 1982 — released a photo Wednesday of the cougar that was snapped by a trail camera on June 1 on private property in southern Marquette County.

Photo by Michigan Wildlife Conservancy.

According to Patrick Rusz, director of wildlife programs for the conservancy, the cougar looks healthy and checks in at about 72 inches from nose to tail and weighs between 100 and 120 pounds. “There have been other confirmations of the existence of cougars in the form of sightings, tracks and scat, but more and more of them are appearing on trail cameras,” Rusz said. “For years, the Department of Natural Resources has been denying or downplaying the existence of cougars, saying they were someone’s escaped pet or cats that drifted in from the west. “It’s time for them to take a look at this.” Rusz, along with retired DNR forester Michael Zuidema, verified the trail camera’s location on a well-used wildlife trail atop a wooded ridge. According to Rusz, the camera also has photographed wolves, coyotes, bobcats and other predators at the same site over a four-year period. – For complete article see http://www.detroitnews.com/article/20120718/METRO/207180396/1361/Cougar-sighting-reported-in-U.P.%E2%80%99s-Marquette-County

Follow-Up Report:

(See OREGONIAN hospitalized with illness believed to be PLAGUE Posted 06/13/12)

Photo provided by Gaylord family taken July 11, 2012.

Oregon 07/17/12 huffingtonpost.com: by Steven Dubois – One look at Paul Gaylord’s hands shows why the plague is referred to as “Black Death.” The welder’s once-strong hands have been withered by the cell-killing infection and darkened to the color of charcoal. Doctors are waiting to see if they can save a portion of his fingers, but the outlook is grim for the man who needs them for his livelihood. “I don’t think I can do my job,” Gaylord said in a phone interview from a Bend, Ore., hospital. “I’m going to lose all my fingers on both hands. I don’t know about my thumbs. The toes – I might lose all them, too.” Gaylord, who turns 60 next month, contracted a rare case of the plague trying to take a mouse from the jaws of a choking cat at his home in Prineville, in rural Oregon. – For complete article see http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/07/17/paul-gaylord-recovering-f_n_1681242.html

Eastern Equine Encephalitis (EEE):

Massachusetts 07/18/12 foxnews.com: Massachusetts will launch an urgent campaign of aerial spraying after numerous mosquito samples collected in the southeast of the state tested positive for the killer EEE virus, health officials said on Tuesday. A bite from an infected mosquito can transmit the EEE virus, triggering a potentially deadly inflammation of the brain that can also leave survivors with significant brain damage. – See http://www.foxnews.com/health/2012/07/18/massachusetts-targets-killer-mosquitoes-with-aerial-spraying/

North Carolina 07/18/12 thehorse.com: Two North Carolina Quarter Horses were euthanized this month after contracting EEE, a mosquito-borne disease that is largely preventable in equine by vaccination. The unvaccinated horses–a 2-year-old Robeson County mare and a 7-year-old stallion from Bladen County–exhibited signs of generalized weakness, stumbling, depression, and inability to stand or eat. The Robeson County horse’s condition deteriorated so quickly that she was euthanized within 24 hours of first exhibiting clinical signs. The Bladen County stallion displayed signs for several weeks before being euthanized earlier this month; testing at Rollins Laboratory, in Raleigh, confirmed EEE this week. They are the first reported cases of EEE in North Carolina horses this year. Last week, New Hanover County officials reported that EEE was found in a sentinel chicken flock. – See http://www.thehorse.com/ViewArticle.aspx?ID=20332

West Nile Virus (WNV):

Stanislaus County

California 07/18/12 Stanislaus County: A 6-year-old girl has WNV, the third confirmed human case in the state this year. – See http://www.mercurynews.com/breaking-news/ci_21101043/calif-girl-has-west-nile-3rd-case-state

Contra Costa County

California 07/18/12 Contra Costa County: Two crows tested positive for WNV Tuesday, according to the Contra Costa Mosquito and Vector Control District. The crows were found in the towns of Pleasant Hill and Knightsen. – See http://www.ktvu.com/news/news/health-med-fit-science/two-dead-birds-discovered-coco-county-carrying-wes/nPxd7/


Florida 07/18/12 Graceville, Jackson County: A raccoon that fought with and was killed by two dogs on Damascus Church Road has tested positive for rabies. – See http://www.wmbb.com/story/19058023/another-rabid-raccoon-found-in-jackson-county

Georgia 07/17/12 Waverly, Camden County: A resident is being treated for exposure to rabies after being exposed to a fox that tested positive for the virus. – See http://www.news4jax.com/news/georgia-news/Rabid-fox-found-in-Camden-County/-/475792/15578962/-/f8miyk/-/index.html

Idaho 07/18/12 Caldwell, Canyon County: A bat that bit a young girl playing near the Indian Creek Bridge on Tuesday has tested positive for rabies. – See http://www.kivitv.com/news/local/162950486.html

Kansas 07/18/12 Augusta, Butler County: A skunk that fought with a dog has tested positive for rabies. – See http://www.andoveramerican.com/news/x558822720/Rabid-skunk-found-in-Butler-County

Maine 07/18/12 Bath, Sagadahoc County: A fox that attacked a 67-year-old man on Whiskeag Road Monday has tested positive for rabies. This is the second confirmed case of rabies in the city this year. – See http://www.theforecaster.net/news/print/2012/07/18/bath-has-2nd-rabies-case-year/130141

Nebraska 07/18/12 Cheyenne County: by John Roark – Two recent reports of rabid skunks in eastern Cheyenne County is creating cause for concern. The first incident occurred July 2 in the Lodgepole-Sunol area, when a skunk managed to get inside the back yard of a residence and tried to attack a small dog. That skunk was taken to White Bluffs Veterinary Hospital in Sidney, before being sent by Dr. Dave Weiderspon to laboratories at Kansas State University in Manhattan, where the animal tested positive for rabies. A week later, another skunk was discovered in the back yard of a residence along Road 109, near Sidney Airport. In that instance, a dog was playing with the dead skunk, which also tested positive for rabies at KSU. – See http://www.suntelegraph.com/cms/news/story-628153.html

New York 07/18/12 Otsego County: Four people are being treated for potential exposure to rabies after a cat tested positive for the virus. – See http://www.wktv.com/news/local/Cat-tests-positive-for-rabies-in-Otsego-County-162922856.html

New York 07/19/12 Mahopac, Putnam County: One person is being treated for exposure to rabies after being bitten by a stray cat that tested positive for the virus. – See http://www.putnamcountycourier.com/news/2012-07-19/General_Stories/Rabid_Cat_Found.html

North Carolina 07/17/12 Boone, Watauga County: The Appalachian District Health Department is urging anyone to come forward who might have had contact with a striped black-and-brown cat last week in Boone — a cat later determined to have rabies. The department received a report of three females in a Ford F-150 truck, either green and tan or brown and tan, who left a thin, striped, black-and-brown cat at the Kangaroo gas station on State Farm Road around 4:30 p.m. July 12. The cat was later taken to the Watauga Humane Society and tested positive for rabies. It is critical that the three individuals and anyone else who may have come in contact with this animal between June 29 and July 15 contact the Watauga County Health Department immediately at (828) 264-4995 immediately for a rabies risk assessment.

North Carolina 07/18/12 Hillsborough, Orange County: A raccoon that was attacked by dogs near Highway 57 has tested positive for rabies. This is the eighth case of rabies confirmed in the county this year. – See http://www.chapelboro.com/Eighth-Confirmed-Rabies-Case-In-OC/13754821

Pennsylvania 07/18/12 Oakmont, Allegheny County: Health officials have issued a rabies warning after a raccoon found staggering along a walking trail near Allegheny River Boulevard and Allegheny Avenue on Sunday tested positive for rabies. – See http://www.wpxi.com/news/news/local/rabies-warning-issued-after-raccoon-tests-positive/nPxkd/

MARYLAND WOMAN attacked in her yard by DEER with RABIES ~ CALIFORNIA reopens wilderness park after MOUNTAIN LION is captured ~ NEW MEXICO officers shoot MOUNTAIN LION that tried to attack a WOMAN ~ EASTERN EQUINE ENCEPHALITIS report from FL ~ WEST NILE VIRUS reports from CT, DE, IL, MA, NJ, OK, & TX ~ RABIES reports from ME, & NY.

White tailed buck. Courtesy U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service.

Maryland 07/16/12 times-news.com: by Michael A. Sawyers – The last thing Theresa Stevens expected to happen July 6 was to be kicked in the face by a deer, especially a deer that had rabies. The Georges Creek Boulevard woman is part way through a series of post-exposure rabies shots that will continue weekly into early August. Stevens, whose home is directly behind Jolly Roger Discount Liquors, said she had let her Yorkie out of the house at 6 a.m. when she looked up and found herself nose to nose with a deer. “It stood up on its back legs and hit me in the cheek with one hoof and on the shoulder with the other,” Stevens said. Stevens pushed the deer away, grabbed her dog, and awakened her husband, Larry, telling him she had been attacked by a deer. “He thought I was crazy,” she said. When the Stevenses went back outside, the doe was lying beneath their Toyota Corolla. “I got it a bucket of water and it stuck its head in it,” Stevens said. “Larry got some video of the deer under the car.”

Courtesy National Park Service.

Eventually, Jim Mullan of the Maryland Wildlife and Heritage Service was called to the scene. “The deer was emaciated and appeared to have been injured, probably by a vehicle strike,” Mullan said. “It could have been that weakened condition that allowed the deer to become contacted by a rabid animal.” The deer was euthanized and samples were taken to test for chronic wasting disease and rabies. Rabies was confirmed July 9 via a laboratory test at the Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene in Baltimore, Mullan said. The CWD results are awaited. CWD is a deer disease and is not known to affect humans. A determination was made that Stevens, whose hands had small cuts upon them, was exposed to the rabies virus by touching the water in which the deer had placed its head and deposited saliva. Stevens said she developed a bad headache and muscle pain seven days after the incident and began vaccinations that evening. “I won’t be hospitable to any more wildlife,” Stevens said. It is rare for a deer to contract rabies, according to George Timko, a biologist with the Maryland Wildlife & Heritage Service. “The last case we confirmed in the state was in Frederick County three or four years ago,” Timko said Monday. The most likely source of the rabies would be a raccoon, he added. The biologist said feeding deer, such as with corn, will attract raccoons as well, thus putting those two animals in proximity and increasing the chance that a rabid raccoon could infect a deer.

California 07/17/12 sacbee.com: Game wardens have captured a mountain lionin a Southern California wilderness park closed to visitors during the weekend because of a cougar prowling the area. State Fish and Game spokesman Andrew Hughan says the 100-pound male mountain lion was trapped early Tuesday in the Whiting Ranch Wilderness Park in the Santa Ana Mountains foothills of eastern Orange County.  A portion of the park is in Cleveland National Forest. The park was closed after a mountain lion was spotted in the park on Sunday. Hughan tells City News Service that the animal trapped

Courtesy National Park Service.

Tuesday is believed to be the same one. The park is now open. In 2004, mountain biker Mark Reynolds was killed by a cougar lion in Whiting Ranch Wilderness Park.

New Mexico 07/17/12 lcsun-news.com: by Duane Barbati – Otero County Sheriff’s Office deputies had to kill a mountain lion in the yard of a Chaparral residence last Wednesday, an OCSO spokesman said. OCSO Sgt. Mark Tarantino said a female mountain lion was shot at a residence in the 200 block of Jung Sun Lane. “It was atypical ” Tarantino said. “It was going back and forth along the back fence of the property and under a trailer. It was transported by New Mexico Game and Fish to be tested. It was pretty thin. It was young and thin, no obvious problems. It was about four feet long. I am guessing it was driven out of the mountains by older mature animals. It had traveled down to the residential area of Chaparral. It is not common for them to reside in a residential area. It indicates to me there is an issue with that animal.” According to the sheriff’s office incident report, the owner of the residence reported that the mountain lion tried to attack her while she was getting into her vehicle. – For complete article go to http://www.lcsun-news.com/las_cruces-news/ci_21091757/deputies-shoot-mountain-lion-chaparral-yard

Eastern Equine Encephalitis (EEE):

Alachua County

Florida 07/17/12 Alachua County: Officials say EEE has been detected in a sentinel chicken. County health director Anthony Dennis told a newspaper a human case of EEE was reported in Holmes County last week, but the person had also spent time in Washington County. – See http://www.miamiherald.com/2012/07/17/2898872/eastern-equine-encephalitis-detected.html

West Nile Virus (WNV):

Fairfield County

Connecticut 07/17/12 Greenwich, Fairfield County: Health officials announced Tuesday that mosquitoes caught last week as part of the Connecticut Mosquito Management Program in Old Greenwich have tested positive for the WNV. – See https://mail.google.com/mail/?hl=en&shva=1#inbox/138969965199e2d0

Delaware 07/16/12 Newark, New Castle County: A crow that was taken to the Delaware Public Health Lab by members of the Tri-State Bird Rescue in Newark tested positive for WNV a week ago.  The bird was collected in the Newark area prompting increased mosquito surveillance and monitoring. – See http://www.wgmd.com/?p=63496

Cook County

Illinois 07/17/12 Glencoe, Cook County: North Shore Mosquito Abatement District officials confirm a pool of mosquitoes collected on June 27 has tested positive for WNV. – See http://winnetka.patch.com/articles/mosquitoes-with-west-nile-virus-found-in-glencoe

Suffolk County

Massachusetts 07/16/12 West Roxbury, Suffolk County: The second case of WNV-infected mosquitoes in Boston was found in West Roxbury last week. A sample from one mosquito pool collected July 9, came back with positive results for the virus on July 12, said Boston Public Health Commission spokeswoman Katinka Podmaniczky on Monday. – See http://www.wickedlocal.com/west-roxbury/news/x1245786227/West-Nile-virus-positive-mosquitoes-found-in-West-Roxbury#axzz20woAWSoN

Warren County

New Jersey 07/17/12 Warren County: A group of 75 Culex mosquitoes collected in Harmony and a crow collected in Washington Borough both tested positive for WNV. The mosquitoes were collected on Tuesday, July 3, in a trap specifically designed to catch Culex mosquitoes, the type of mosquito responsible for transmitting the virus, especially from bird to bird. – See http://www.nj.com/warrenreporter/index.ssf/2012/07/west_nile_virus_reported_in_wa.html

Pittsburg County

Oklahoma 07/17/12 McAlester, Pittsburg County: A human case of WNV is one of only two cases found statewide so far this year. The other case is in Tulsa County. “ The individual with the confirmed case of WNV in Pittsburg County has been identified by the health department only as a man “in the age 65 or older category,” Coffman said. – See http://normantranscript.com/new/x333941068/West-Nile-Virus-detected-in-Pittsburg-County

Tarrant County

Texas 07/17/12 Tarrant County: Physicians and hospitals report 16 human cases of WNV so far in the county this year, according to officials with the public health department. Nine of the cases have been the more serious neuro-invasive strain of the virus, while seven cases have been diagnosed as West Nile fever, said Sandra Parker, Tarrant County public health medical director and health authority. No deaths attributable to the virus have been reported in Tarrant County. “This fits the definition of an epidemic,” Parker said. “The most important thing I think the numbers say is that we need to do what we can to prevent the illness.” – See http://www.star-telegram.com/2012/07/17/4105313/west-nile-case-levels-fit-definition.html


Maine 07/16/12 Thorndike, Waldo County: Michael Topich, 47, had eleven eight-week-old puppies in his backyard and recently found a skunk had broken into their fenced-in area. The skunk was dragging one of the puppies, so Topich grabbed it by the back of the neck to save the pup, coming in contact with the skunk’s saliva at the same time. As an afterthought, he decided to have the skunk tested for rabies and it came back positive. He has since received post-exposure rabies treatments, and all of the puppies had to be euthanized. – See http://www.wcsh6.com/news/article/207497/2/Thorndike-man-beats-rabid-skunk-with-bare-hands-in-attempt-to-save-puppies

New York 07/16/12 Whitestone, Oneida County: A gray fox that attacked a domestic cat in Whitestown last week has tested positive for rabies, according to a news release from the county health department. The fox was reported to be running around in a residential area near Judd Road July 11 before the attack on July 12, according to the release. – See http://www.uticaod.com/latestnews/x736424257/Rabid-fox-found-in-Whitestown

MINNESOTA triathlete bitten 25 times by OTTER in northern lake ~ WEST NILE VIRUS reports from CA, MS, NY (2), & TX (fatality) ~ RABIES reports from AR, MD, NY, NC (2), & SC ~ CDC REPORTS: ZOONOTIC DISEASE summary for week ending June 23, 2012.

Otter. Photo by Keven Law. Wikimedia Commons.

Minnesota 07/15/12 therepublic.com: A veteran triathlete had to get rabies shots after she was attacked and bitten 25 times by an otter in a northern Minnesota lake. Leah Prudhomme, 33, of Anoka, was doing a regular 1.5-mile training swim in Island Lake, 17 miles north of Duluth, on Wednesday evening. As she passed by a bog on the last stretch, she felt something bite her ankle to the bone: an otter. She screamed for help as her father and young children watched from the shore. Prudhomme sustained 25 bites — some more than 2 inches deep — before her father could rescue her in a boat about seven minutes later. “It had a gray head, little beaded eyes, and was very agile in the water. … It would just like latch onto my leg and latch onto my thigh,” Prudhomme said. At St. Luke’s Hospital in Duluth, she got shots for rabies and tetanus, plus antibiotics. She got more rabies shots back home in the Twin Cities on Saturday.

Photo by Alan Pennington. Wikimedia Commons.

The rare attack baffled experts who surmise the otter had rabies or was a mother protecting its young. “I’ve never seen or heard of it before,” said Mike Scott, a conservation officer with the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources in Duluth. “We’ve got otters everywhere … lakes, streams. Most times, (swimmers) wouldn’t even know it. Otters usually stay away.” Prudhomme said she’s thankful she wore her wet suit, which was shredded in the attack but likely saved her from more extensive injuries. “My wetsuit tells the tale best because there’s just claw marks and chunks missing and lots of bites all over the wetsuit,” she said. “It’s pretty much destroyed now.” Prudhomme also said she still plans to compete in a triathlon on the same lake next Sunday. Fortunately, the swimming portion is set to take place on the other side of the lake. “I’m scared, but it’s one of those things you don’t want to let get the best of you,” she said. “It’s not like I’ll be bitten by another otter.”

West Nile Virus (WNV):

Sacramento County

California 07/16/12 Sacramento County: Risk of WNV continues to be high in South Sacramento County especially in the areas of Wilton and Elk Grove. Officials confirmed that 50 mosquito samples tested positive for WNV. – See https://mail.google.com/mail/?hl=en&shva=1#inbox/138908c3653d96a9

Jones County

Mississippi 07/16/12 Jones County: The state’s fourth human case of WNV this year has been confirmed in Jones County. The state Department of Health reported the new laboratory-confirmed WNV case today. So far this year, cases have been reported in Lauderdale, Hancock, Lincoln and Jones counties, according to the Health Department. Mississippi had 52 West Nile virus cases and five deaths last year. – See http://www.clarionledger.com/article/20120716/NEWS/120716021/West-Nile-virus-case-confirmed-Jones-County?odyssey=tab|topnews|text|Home

Nassau County

New York 07/16/12 Massapequa, Nassau County: A mosquito carrying WNV has been found in a trap in Massapequa according to the Department of Health. In total, the virus has been detected in mosquitoes at 4 trap locations in Nassau County including Bayville, Lakeview and Mineola. – See http://massapequa.patch.com/articles/west-nile-virus-found-in-massapequa-mosquito-trap

Rockland County

New York 07/16/12 Rockland County: Nine more mosquito samples collected have tested positive for WNV – bringing the total so far to 15, the highest level this early in the season since the virus appeared more than a decade ago. All of the mosquito samples were collected by the Rockland Department of Health during the week of July 2. They were tested by the state Department of Health and results were announced today. Four of the insects were found in Orangetown, two each in Ramapo and Clarkstown and one in Haverstraw. – See http://www.lohud.com/article/20120716/NEWS03/307160067/West-Nile-Rockland-seeing-highest-level-virus-carrying-mosquitoes-early-none-far-Westchester

Dallas County

Texas 07/16/12 Dallas, Dallas County: The city of Dallas confirmed Monday that one person has died after contracting WNV. In a news conference, city officials announced the man was in his 60s and lived in the 75204 zip code near East Dallas. They also said they are fearful of another severe outbreak such as the one in 2006, when 104 people in Dallas County were infected and four died from the virus. So far this summer, there have been 16 human cases of WNV in Dallas County. – See http://www.nbcdfw.com/news/health/Dallas-Reports-First-Fatality-from-West-Nile-Virus-162602056.html


Arkansas 07/13/12 Little Rock, Pulaski County: The management of Albert Pike apartments will have to appear in court after bats were found inside tenant’s rooms and the problem was not corrected. Little Rock code enforcement confirmed one of those bats tested positive for rabies. – See http://arkansasmatters.com/fulltext?nxd_id=560492

Maryland 07/13/12 Chevy Chase, Montgomery County: A man reportedly was bitten twice by a fox in the Village of Martin’s Additions on Wednesday and was taken to a hospital for precautionary rabies shots. The fox has not been located. See – http://chevychase.patch.com/articles/unpleasant-fox-encounter-in-martin-s-additions

New York 07/13/12 Onondaga County: Three raccoons have tested positive for rabies, prompting the county Health Department to warn the public not to touch or feed wild animals. The rabid raccoons were located near Cold Brook Road in the town of Spafford, Barker Street in the town of Otisco and Shea Road in the town of Pompey, according to the Health Department. – See http://www.syracuse.com/news/index.ssf/2012/07/three_raccoons_in_onondaga_cou.html

North Carolina 07/14/12 Farmville, Pitt County: A Farmville family had to have its pet dog euthanized Friday.  According to officials, the unvaccinated dog was bitten by a raccoon that tested positive for rabies. – See http://www.reflector.com/news/rabies-found-racoon-1136567

North Carolina 07/13/12 Denton, Davidson County: A dead raccoon found has become the fourth reported case of rabies in the county this year, according to the health department. The raccoon was found in a fenced-in backyard with four dogs. Two of the dogs were properly vaccinated and received booster shots. The other two dogs’ vaccinations had expired, and they were euthanized. No person was exposed. – See http://www.the-dispatch.com/article/20120713/News/307139976

South Carolina 07/13/12 Horry County: A bat found in the county has tested positive for rabies, according to the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control. A person was bitten by the bat. DHEC does not comment on medical treatment victims may be receiving, but it is standard practice for people bitten by rabid animals to undergo immediate medical treatment. “In this case, the victim was aware of the bat bite,” said Sue Ferguson, with DHEC. “However, bats have small teeth that might leave marks not easily seen. Some situations require medical advice even in the absence of an obvious bite wound. If you awaken and find a bat in your room, often referred to as ‘overnighting,’ or if you see a bat in the room of an unattended child, or near a mentally impaired or intoxicated person, seek medical advice and have the bat tested.” According to the national Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, most of the recent human rabies cases in the U.S. have been caused by exposure to rabid bats. – See http://www.carolinalive.com/news/story.aspx?id=776112#.UASAEfUt7WA

CDC Reports:

CDC MMWR Summary for Week ending June 23, 2012:

Published June 29, 2012/ 61(25); ND-339-ND-352

Anaplasmosis . . . 21 . . . New York (17), Rhode Island (2), Virginia (2),

Babesiosis . . . 5 . . . New York (5),

Brucellosis . . . 1 . . . Florida,  

Ehrlichiosis . . . 11 . . . Maine, New York, Ohio, Rhode Island, Tennessee (2), Virginia (5),

Giardiasis . . . 117 . . . Arizona, Arkansas (2), California (20), District of Columbia, Florida (22), Idaho (2), Iowa (2), Maine (3), Maryland (4), Montana (3), Nebraska (6), New York (26), Ohio (15), Rhode Island, Vermont, (3) Virginia (2),

HME/HGE Undetermined . . . 4 . . . Indiana (3), Virginia

Lyme Disease . . .  137. . .  Connecticut, Florida (5), Maryland (11), Pennsylvania (76), Rhode Island (4), Vermont (9), Virginia (31),

Q Fever (Chronic) . . . 1 . . . Nebraska, 

Rabies (Animal) . . . 20. . . Alabama (4), Rhode Island (2), Texas (2), Vermont, Virginia (11),

Spotted Fever including Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever (Confirmed) . . . 1. . . Indiana,

Spotted Fever including Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever (Probable) . . . 24 . . . Alabama (2), Indiana, Tennessee (5), Virginia (16),

Tularemia . . . 1 . . . Montana.

WASHINGTON WOMAN attacked by pack of RACCOONS ~ ILLINOIS WOMAN hospitalized with ROCKY MOUNTAIN SPOTTED FEVER ~ EASTERN EQUINE ENCEPHALITIS reports from MA, & NC ~ WEST NILE VIRUS report from OK ~ COYOTE attack in GA ~ MOUNTAIN LION sightings in CA, & IA ~ RABIES reports from CA (2), FL, GA, NY, NC, & OH ~ TRAVEL WARNINGS: CAMBODIA reports 56 CHILDREN have died of an UNDIAGNOSED ILLNESS.

Raccoon. Photo by Quartl. Wikimedia Commons.

Washington 07/10/12 seattletimes.com: by Cathy McLain – A woman was attacked by a pack of raccoons near Fort Steilacoom Park Monday afternoon, Lakewood police said. Michaela Lee, 28, was walking home with her leashed dog after jogging through the park about 1:30 p.m., when the raccoons attacked, her boyfriend Shane Bennett said. Her dog, Madison, chased two raccoons up a tree as Lee was leaving the park, said Lakewood police spokesman Chris Lawler. Lee went to get the dog when more raccoons came out of a bush and chased her. She ran 75 feet before they knocked her down. A witness told police that six or seven raccoons chased her, and that three attacked her for about 15 seconds. Lee had many scratches and was treated for about 16 puncture wounds, into which hospital staff injected antibiotics. Wounds in her arm and leg needed staples and she’s been started on a round of rabies vaccine, although she since has learned the disease is rare in raccoons in the area. – For complete article see http://blogs.seattletimes.com/today/2012/07/woman-attacked-by-pack-of-raccoons-suffers-about-100-wounds/

Illinois 07/11/12 nwherald.com: by Lawerence Synett – A Woodstock woman bitten by a tick has been hospitalized with Rocky Mountain spotted fever, according to the McHenry County Department of Health. The confirmed case is the first in the county since May 2008, when seven tick-transmitted illnesses were reported over a two-week span, according to health department officials. That included five cases of Lyme disease and separate cases of spotted fever and ehrlichiosis. It is unknown when and where the infected tick bit the woman, health department spokeswoman Debra Quackenbush said. The woman’s prior medical history is also unknown. The fever can be severe or possibly fatal if not treated in the first few days of symptoms, even in previously health people. – For complete article see http://www.nwherald.com/2012/07/11/woodstock-woman-hospitalized-with-rocky-mountain-spotted-fever/akbgq0l/

Eastern Equine Encephalitis (EEE):

Massachusetts 07/12/12 Easton, Bristol County: The town is recommending organized activities in town playgrounds ,fields and parks be curtailed and soccer leagues and baseball leagues have agreed to end games and practices one hour before sunset after EEE was found in one of the town’s mosquito pools. – See http://www.wcvb.com/health/Eastern-Equine-Encephalitis-detected-in-mosquitoes/-/9848730/15480094/-/dj3ywn/-/index.html

North Carolina 07/11/12 New Hanover County: Officials issued a health alert on Wednesday after a chicken flock tested positive for EEE. – See http://www.starnewsonline.com/article/20120711/ARTICLES/120719917/-1/news05?Title=Chicken-tests-positive-for-Eastern-Equine-Encephalitis

West Nile Virus (WNV):

Oklahoma 07/12/12 Tulsa, Tulsa County: Health officials confirm that mosquitoes have begun to test positive for WNV, and a 65-year-old man has been diagnosed with the county’s first human case of the virus. – See http://www.ktul.com/story/19011305/tulsa-confirms-this-years-first-case-of-west-nile-virus

Coyote Attacks:

Georgia 07/11/12 Bogart, Oconee County: A coyote attacked and killed a family’s pet dog and later reappeared at the neighborhood swimming pool on Solitaire Court in the Belfair subdivision. – See http://www.cbsatlanta.com/story/19005772/wild-coyote-attacks-neighborhood-pets

Mountain Lion Sightings:

California 07/12/12 Avila Beach, San Luis Obispo County: A warning has been posted at the Bob Jones Trail alerting bicyclists, runners and walkers of a mountain lion sighting in the area Wednesday. – See http://www.ksby.com/news/warning-posted-on-popular-bike-and-walking-path-after-mountain-lion-sighting/

Iowa 07/12/12 Des Moines, Polk County: Children at the Norwoodville Community Center day camp were sent inside this morning after a mountain lion sighting was reported nearby in the 3200 block of Broadway Avenue and Northeast 46th Avenue. – See http://blogs.desmoinesregister.com/dmr/index.php/2012/07/12/ceputies-investigate-reported-mountain-lion-sighting-in-ne-des-moines/


California 07/12/12 Palm Desert, Riverside County: A bat that was stuck in a wall at a shopping center on Highway 111 on July 3rd has tested positive for rabies. – See http://www.mydesert.com/article/20120712/NEWS01/120712011/Dead-bat-found-Coachella-Valley-tests-positive-rabies

California 07/10/12 Pasadena, Los Angeles County: A rabies alert has been issued by county health officials who confirm that 15 bats have tested positive for the virus. – See http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/lanow/2012/07/rabid-bat-warning-issued-for-pasadena-residents-pets.html

Florida 07/10/11 Wewahitchka, Gulf County: A fox that attacked a pet, the pet’s owner, and sheriff’s deputies before being shot has tested positive for rabies. – See http://www.wmbb.com/story/18986511/teenager-fights-back-in-rabid-fox-attack

Georgia 07/11/12 newscentralga.com: The Macon Bibb County Health Department Environmental Health Section and Macon-Bibb County Animal Welfare offices are seeking the public’s help in locating a dog that bit someone because the animal is believed to have rabies. According to a health department news release, two Bibb County residents were bitten by a white poodle mix, possibly crossed with Bichon Frise, over the July 4th holiday weekend.  The dog in question bit a person who was considering taking it in as a pet and also bit a neighbor’s child. They decided not to keep the animal. The dog was then given away to a woman in the Wal-Mart parking lot on Zebulon Road sometime between July 7 and July 10, 2012. The identity of the woman is unknown. The release states the woman stated she would give the dog to a Jones County animal rescue group if she decided not to keep it. Jones County authorities are aware of the situation and have not yet located the dog. If the dog is not located, the adult and child bitten will be asked to immediately begin the post exposure rabies prevention vaccinations. According to the health department, rabies can be prevented by post-exposure vaccination. Once a person has rabies, there is no treatment and it is usually fatal. The Georgia Rabies Manual requires that dogs, cats and ferrets be quarantined for 10 days following a bite, regardless of whether they have current rabies vaccination or not. If the animal is alive at the end of the 10 day period, then the person bitten would not need the preventative shots. This quarantine process is to protect the health of the person exposed. If you have any information regarding the dog, you’re asked to contact Donna Cadwell at 478-749-0121 between the hours of 8:00 AM and 4:30 PM or e-mail anytime to dwcadwell@dhr.state.ga.us.

New York 07/11/12 New Rochelle, Westchester County: A rabies alert has been issued “to residents who may have had contact with a stray kitten or cat any time since early June on the grounds of the New York Athletic Club and/or the Winged Foot Day Camp,” which are both in New Rochelle and border Pelham Manor’s Shore Park. A small grey kitten that was on the grounds in early June has has tested positive for rabies, and it may have exposed other kittens or cats nearby,” said department spokesperson Caren Halbfinger in a news release. A resident took the cat home June 6 and was caring for it before it began acting aggressively last week. – See http://newrochelle.dailyvoice.com/news/rabies-alert-issued-new-rochelle-residents

North Carolina 07/11/12 Mount Holly, Gaston County: A fox killed by two dogs in the 300 block of Oakwood Drive in the Dickson Heights subdivision has tested positive for rabies. – See http://www.gastongazette.com/news/fox-73165-gaston-rabies.html

Ohio 07/11/12 Springfield, Clark County: A red bat found in the historic Ridgewood neighborhood has tested positive for rabies. – See http://www.wdtn.com/dpp/news/local/clark/rabid-bat-discovered-in-springfield#.T_-rCvWF7WB

Travel Warnings:

Cambodia 07/06/12 who.int: World Health Organization Global Alert and Response: The Ministry of Health of the Kingdom of Cambodia is conducting active investigation into the cause of a recent undiagnosed syndrome that has caused illness and deaths among children in the country. Preliminary findings of the investigation identified a total of 74 cases that were hospitalized from April to 5 July 2012. Of these, 57 cases (including 56 deaths), presented a common syndrome of fever, respiratory and neurological signs, which is now the focus of the investigation. The majority of the identified cases to date were under three years old. Most of them were from the southern and central parts of the country and received treatment at Kantha Bopha Children’s hospital, which is a reference pediatric hospital. Despite all efforts, many of the children died within 24 hours of admission. Available samples have been tested at the Institute Pasteur in Cambodia. Although a causative agent remains to be formally identified, all these samples were found negative for H5N1 and other influenza viruses, SARS, and Nipah.

The Ministry of Health was first alerted to this by Kantha Bopha Children’s hospital in Phnom Penh, where the majority of the cases were hospitalized. The Ministry of Health notified WHO about this event through the IHR notification mechanism as it met the criteria for notification of any event where the underlying agent or disease or mode of transmission is not formally identified. WHO and partners are assisting the Ministry of Health with this event which focuses on hospitalized cases, early warning surveillance data, laboratory data and field investigations.  While this event is being actively investigated, the Government is also looking at other diseases occurring in the country, including dengue, hand-foot-mouth and Chikungunya. Parents have been advised to take their children to hospital if they identify any signs of unusual illness. The Government is also reinforcing awareness of good hygiene practices to the public, which includes frequent washing of hands.

Update 07/09/12: Based on the latest laboratory results, a significant proportion of the samples tested positive for enterovirus 71 (EV-71), which causes hand foot and mouth disease (HFMD). The EV-71 virus has been known to generally cause severe complications amongst some patients. Additionally, a number of other pathogens, including dengue and streptococcus suis were identified in some of the samples. The samples were found to be negative for H5N1 and other influenza viruses, SARS and Nipah. Further investigations into matching the clinical, laboratory and epidemiological information are ongoing, and are likely to be concluded in a few days.

Is CANINE BRUCELLOSIS an emerging infectious disease? ~ WEST NILE VIRUS reports from CA, NE, & TX ~ RABIES reports from OR, TX, & VA ~ CDC REPORTS: ZOONOTIC DISEASE summary for week ending June 16, 2012.

Rottweiler puppies at 6 weeks. PD. Wikimedia Commons.

Global dogchannel.com: by Debra M. Eldredge, DVM – Brucellosis is a disease bandied about casually by many dog fanciers. Breeders recommend that all bitches have a negative Brucellosis test before any breedings, but often skimp on testing the stud dogs. It seems like such a routine problem. In reality, a diagnosis of brucellosis can be a kennel wipeout, not just the loss of an individual litter. Brucellosis is caused by a bacteria called Brucella canis. There are other versions of the brucella bacteria that primarily infect pigs, cattle, sheep and goats. All of the versions appear to be at least mildly infectious to other species, including humans, making this a zoonotic disease.

A dog can be infected with other versions of the brucella bacteria as well as the canine type. The bovine version of brucellosis is a reportable disease in virtually every state, but even the canine version is reportable in some states. According to the Iowa State Center for Food Security and Public Health, this bacteria has been identified in dogs with reproductive problems all over the world with the exception of New Zealand and Australia. A study from Cornell sights figures as high as 20 to 30 percent for Central/South American dogs. The same study mentions estimates of 7 to 8 percent in stray dogs in Japan and the southern United States. Another site mentions infection rates possibly as high as 8 to 10 percent of the dogs in the US.

Dr. Debra M. Eldredge

In people, blood tests indicating exposure show that as of July 2009, 67.8 percent of Oklahoma’s human residents had been exposed to brucella bacteria (probably including all the variants, not just the canine version). There have been documented cases of people contracting the canine form of brucellosis, even from the “tamer” laboratory strain, but clinical disease is not very common. The people most at risk of illness are the elderly, very young and anyone with any immunocompromising illness. Still, it makes sense for everyone to wear gloves dealing with any aftereffects of an abortion and take precautions. – For complete article see http://www.dogchannel.com/dog-magazines/dogsinreview/dogs-in-review-february-2011-health.aspx

West Nile Virus (WNV):

Ventura County

California 07/09/12 Ventura County: Five more birds have tested positive for WNV, including four found in Simi Valley and one in Thousand Oaks, county health officials said today. The five were found in the last week of June, and state test results confirmed Friday that they all had WNV, county Environmental Health Division officials said. So far this year, eight wild birds collected in Ventura County have tested positive for the virus. – See http://www.vcstar.com/news/2012/jul/09/five-more-birds-found-with-west-nile-in-ventura/

Nebraska 07/09/12 ne.gov: News Release – Mosquitoes in Adams and Sheridan counties tested positive for WNV and so have birds in Madison and Phelps counties according to the Nebraska Health and Human Services. – See http://dhhs.ne.gov/Pages/Newsroom_Newsreleases_2012_July_WNV.aspx

Tarrant County

Texas 07/09/12 Grapevine, Tarrant County: Mosquitoes carrying the WNV have been confirmed in two parts of the city. Positive results were detected in mosquitoes caught in the Lakeview Drive/Kimball Road area of north Grapevine and in the WT Parr and Hall-Johnson roads area in the south. – See http://www.star-telegram.com/2012/07/09/4087657/mosquitoes-with-west-nile-found.html


Oregon 07/09/12 Corvallis, Benton County: by Lynne Terry – A bat that bit an unvaccinated dog on Friday has tested positive for rabies. The dog found a large brown bat flopping around in thick vegetation and the owner managed to get the bat out of the dog’s mouth without being bitten herself. – See http://www.oregonlive.com/pacific-northwest-news/index.ssf/2012/07/rabid_bat_bites_unvaccinated_d.html

Texas 07/09/12 austintexas.gov: News Release – The Austin/Travis County Health and Human Services Department is working to identify an adult female who came in contact with a bat that has tested positive for rabies. The incident occurred on July 3, 2012 around 10:15 p.m. under the Congress Street Bridge at Lady Bird Lake. The female was reported to be wearing flip flops and an observer noted the bat came in contact with the woman’s feet. Signs were posted in and around that location on Friday, July 6 when lab results became available however; no calls have been received at this time by the city’s health department.  If anyone has information, please contact our office at 512-972-5555. – See http://www.austintexas.gov/news/possible-human-exposure-rabies

Virginia 07/09/12 Pittsylvania County: A raccoon in the Hodnett’s Road area east of Gretna and a fox in the Rover Ridge area of Danville have become the most recent confirmed cases of rabies in the Dan River Region, according to a news release from the Virginia Health Department.  – See http://www2.godanriver.com/news/2012/jul/09/two-more-confirmed-cases-rabies-pittsylvania-count-ar-2044257/

CDC Reports:

CDC MMWR Summary for Week ending June 16, 2012:

Published June 22, 2012/ 61(24); ND-325-ND-338

Anaplasmosis . . . 3 . . . Maine, New York, Tennessee,

Ehrlichiosis . . . 9 . . . Arkansas, Ohio, Tennessee (2), Virginia (5),

Giardiasis . . . 64 . . . Alabama, Alaska, Arkansas (3), Florida (14), Maine (3), Maryland (5), Montana, Nevada  (3), New Mexico, New York (5), Ohio (7), Oregon, Pennsylvania (5), South Carolina (3), Utah (2), Vermont, (2), Virginia (2), Washington (5),

HME/HGE Undetermined . . . 1 . . . Indiana, 

Lyme Disease . . .  160. . .  Connecticut, Florida, Maryland (24), Nebraska, New Jersey (2), New York (44), Ohio, Pennsylvania (61), Tennessee, Vermont (4), Virginia (18), Washington (2),

Rabies (Animal) . . . 25. . . New York (6), Ohio (2), Texas (17),

Spotted Fever including Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever (Confirmed) . . . 2. . . Georgia, Virginia,

Spotted Fever including Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever (Probable) . . . 104 . . . Alabama (5), Arkansas (9), Florida, Indiana (2), Missouri, North Carolina (49), Tennessee (21), Texas, Virginia (15),

West Nile Virus (Neuroinvasive) . . . 1 . . . Texas,

West Nile Virus (Nonneuroinvasive)… 1 … California.

CANADA: ONTARIO scientists find most SQUIRRELS and MICE in Algonquin Provincial Park are infected with bacteria that causes Q-FEVER in HUMANS ~ ALBERTA farmers say WOLVES are slaughtering LIVESTOCK ~ WEST NILE VIRUS reports from ONTARIO (2) ~ WEST NILE VIRUS reports from IL, & MS ~ RABIES reports from GA, NY, RI, & VA.

Flying Squirrel. Photo by State of Indiana.


Ontario 07/03/12 laurentian.ca: News Release – A team of Laurentian University biology researchers has found significant evidence of the spread of the zoonotic bacterium Coxiella burnetii in wildlife in Algonquin Park. A zoonotic disease is one that can be transmitted to humans from animals. The C. burnetii bacterium causes Query fever or “Q-fever” in humans.  It was detected in 6 out of 7 species of wild rodents tested within the boundaries of Algonquin Park, including red squirrels, flying squirrels and deer mice.  It was also found in flying squirrels in the Peterborough area, indicating that the bacteria may be widespread among these animal populations in Ontario.

Researchers say Coxiella burnetii  is generally found on farms with small ruminants, but little is known about transmission of the bacteria from the natural environment.  The researchers, led by Canada Research Chair Dr. Albrecht Schulte-Hostedde of Laurentian University, say their findings suggest that some visitors to Algonquin Park could be at risk of infection. “The bacteria that cause Query fever can make humans quite sick, so this is an important finding,” said Dr. Schulte-Hostedde. “We’re still trying to learn how Coxiella burnetii  is maintained and spread in the natural environment.  We don’t know yet whether wild species are picking it up from domesticated animals, and we don’t know how it changes as it moves between species.  As we learn more about it, we’ll have a better understanding of the potential risk to human health.”

Dr. Albrecht Schulte-Hostedde

Dr. Schulte-Hostedde is Canada Research Chair in Applied Evolutionary Ecology at Laurentian University.  Among other areas of study, he has studied squirrel populations in Algonquin Park for more than 10 years. “We were certainly surprised to find such a high prevalence of Coxiella burnetii  in Algonquin, given the amount of human traffic in the area,” said Dr. Schulte-Hostedde.  “There are hundreds of thousands of visitors to this park in a year, so it’s good news that so far there are no confirmed reports of Q-fever traced back to the Park.” People diagnosed with Query fever are usually infected through contact with sheep, goats or cattle.  The resulting illness may cause fever, flu-like symptoms, and occasionally swelling of the lining of the heart and heart failure.  The last significant outbreak was in the Netherlands in 2007 and led to the infection of more than 2,000 people and the culling of thousands of goats. The results of the Laurentian research are being published in the latest issue of the scientific journal Zoonoses and Public Health.

Alberta 07/04/12 cbc.ca: Farmers near Mayerthorpe are on high alert after wolves attacked animals in two separate incidents over the past two weeks. Three cows were slaughtered in one case; a mare and donkey were attacked in the other. The latter incident occurred earlier this month on Merle Arthur’s horse and mule farm near Mayerthorpe. The attack shocked him because donkeys usually keep wolves at bay. “If you or I were to run up and grab him by the hind leg, we wouldn’t wake up for about a week — if we woke up,” Arthur said. “So he would have put up an awful fight. It would have been more than one wolf. It would have been a pack of wolves that did this.” Arthur had to shoot the donkey because it was so badly injured.

Cattle farmers can get compensation, but Arthur won’t be able to claim anything for his donkey. “They’re not considered a specific meat-producing animal,” said local wildlife officer Greg Gilbertson. “So the program doesn’t cover those types of animals.” Arthur says the loss of his donkey will be a financial set-back as it was the only male he owned for breeding. “This is my living,” he said. “This is what I do and them wolves took a good part of it away.”

West Nile Virus (WNV):

Ontario 07/04/12 North York District, Toronto: Mosquitoes collected along Bayview Avenue, between York Mills Road and Lawrence Avenue East, have tested positive for WNV. – See http://www.insidetoronto.com/community/health/article/1387557–west-nile-virus-found-in-north-york

Ontario 07/04/12 Windsor: Health officials say a mosquito pool has tested positive for WNV. – See http://metronews.ca/news/windsor/285614/west-nile-virus-found-in-windsor/

West Nile Virus (WNV):

Illinois 07/04/12 Monmouth, Warren County: Health officials report WNV positive mosquitoes collected in a batch of insects on Monday. – See http://www.galesburg.com/news/x749721140/West-Nile-virus-found-in-Monmouth

Mississippi 07/04/12 Hancock County: The state’s health department has confirmed a second human case of WNV. Last year the state had 52 human cases and five deaths. – See http://www.nola.com/health/index.ssf/2012/07/mississippi_reports_first_west.html


Georgia 07/04/12 Mitchell County: A fox that scratched a man’s arm when he tried to separate the animal from his pet dog has tested positive for rabies. – See http://www.mysouthwestga.com/news/story.aspx?id=772362#.T_T78vWF7WA

New York 07/03/12 Watertown, Jefferson County: An feral cat found in the East Hills Apartment area off Eastern Boulevard and described as an “orange tabby cat” has tested positive for rabies. – http://www.wwnytv.com/news/local/Rabid-Cat-Found-In-Watertown-Apartment-Complex-161273415.html

Rhode Island 07/03/12 North Providence, Providence County: State health officials say a cat infected with rabies may have had contact with humans and other animals before it died. It is described as an adult gray short-haired cat with tiger stripes and roamed a neighborhood around Central Avenue. Anyone who believes they might have been exposed to the virus should seek medical advice immediately. – See http://www.boston.com/lifestyle/health/2012/07/03/cat-infected-with-rabies-found-north-providence/9v6l700geyNgVCPZl6pDhM/story.html

Virginia 07/04/12 Yorktown, York County: The Peninsula Health Department is looking for a Dachshund that bit a person in the Wolf Trap Park neighborhood on July 1. According to the Department, the victim will have to get a rabies vaccine if the dog is not found. If and when the dog is found, it will be placed in confinement for 10 days. Anyone who has seen a dog matching that description is asked to call Animal Control at 757-890-3601.

CDC reports 149 persons in 28 states infected with SALMONELLA by handling small TURTLES ~ CALIFORNIA man attacked by MOUNTAIN LION near Nevada City ~ WYOMING confirms young male injured by BLACK BEAR ~ WASHINGTON’s Spokane County sees first WOLF attack on LIVESTOCK since 1950 ~ COYOTE attacks on PETS in CA, & ME ~ MOUNTAIN LION sightings in CA, & CO ~ EASTERN EQUINE ENCEPHALITIS reports from GA, & LA ~ WEST NILE VIRUS reports from AZ, CA, IN, GA, MI, MN, MS, NY, & OH ~ RABIES reports from NC, & WI.

Photo courtesy Centers for Disease Control & Prevention.

National 06/29/12 cdc.gov: News Release – A total of 149 persons infected with outbreak strains of Salmonella Sandiego, Salmonella Pomona, and Salmonella Poona have been reported from 28 states. Results of the epidemiologic and environmental investigations indicate exposure to turtles or their environments (e.g., water from a turtle habitat) is the cause of these outbreaks.

  • The number of ill persons identified in each state is as follows: Alabama (2), Alaska (2), Arizona (5), California (26), Colorado (5), Delaware (3), Georgia (3), Illinois (1), Indiana (1), Kentucky (1), Massachusetts (3), Maryland (6), Michigan (2), Minnesota (1), New Jersey (7), New Mexico (4), New York (25), Nevada (6), North Carolina (1), Ohio (2), Oregon (1), Pennsylvania (14), South Carolina (4), Tennessee (2), Texas (17), Vermont (1), Virginia (3), and West Virginia (1).
  • 28 ill persons have been hospitalized, and no deaths have been reported.
  • 64% of ill persons are children 10 years of age or younger, and 28% of ill persons are children 1 year of age or younger.
  • 94% of ill persons with turtle exposure specifically reported exposure to small turtles (shell length less than 4 inches). Thirty-three percent of ill persons with small turtles reported purchasing the turtles from street vendors, and 22% reported purchasing small turtles from pet stores.
  • Small turtles are a well-known source of human Salmonella infections, especially among young children. Because of this risk, the Food and Drug Administration has banned the sale and distribution of these turtles as pets since 1975. Turtles with a shell length of less than 4 inches in size should not be purchased as pets or given as gifts.

For further details see http://www.cdc.gov/salmonella/small-turtles-03-12/index.html

California 07/02/12 sacbee.com: by Matt Weiser – A 63-year-old man was attacked by a mountain lion near Nevada City early Sunday while sleeping alongside a tributary of the Yuba River. The California Department of Fish and Game confirmed the unusual attack after investigating the scene and the man’s injuries. Fish and Game said the man, who is from the Bay Area, was traveling through Nevada County on a planned hiking trip when he decided to stop for the night to sleep. He laid a sleeping bag out on the ground and went to sleep. Around 1 a.m., he was attacked in the sleeping bag by a mountain lion for what he described as 90 seconds to 2 minutes. The man said the animal bit and clawed him through the sleeping bag, through a cap he was wearing and through his clothes. The lion ceased the attack, looked at him from 15 feet away for another 15 to 30 seconds, then ran into the night. The man drove himself to a hospital in Grass Valley, where he was treated for non-life threatening injuries and later released. Game wardens responded to the hospital and verified that the man suffered severe scratches and puncture wounds. They collected several articles of clothing and the sleeping bag, which were analyzed at Fish and Game’s forensics laboratory in Sacramento. At the scene, wardens found mountain lion tracks. They used trained dogs in an attempt to track the lion but were unsuccessful. However, they did find the remains of a domestic cat which had injuries consistent with a mountain lion attack. An effort to track the lion continues. Fish and Game counts this as the 15th confirmed mountain lion attack in California since 1890.

Wyoming 07/02/12 tetonvalleynews.net: by Rachael Horne – Public Information Specialist Mark Gocke with the Wyoming Game and Fish Department confirmed there was a bear attack on the Aspen Trail involving a male subject early Saturday morning June 30. He said from reports and enforcement officers sent to the scene, a young male individual likely surprised a bear in an area with heavy forest cover and low visibility. “It sounded like a surprise encounter,” said Gocke. “The bear reacted and charged.” Gocke said from reports, it sounded like the male subject attempted to climb a tree. The bear was then able to get a hold of his foot and pull him from the tree to the ground. It was believed the bear then took off and hasn’t been seen again. Gocke said it was believed to be a black bear based on hair found at the scene and tracks. He said it looked like a bear had been digging and rolling rocks near the scene of the incident. “It was doing what bears do,” said Gocke. “He was able to spook it and the bear charged, which is a normal reaction for a bear at close range.” Gocke said they have no plans to trap the bear. Last week, two bears believed to have been habituated to human food in Teton Canyon were euthanized. Captain Tripp Wilson from the Teton County Wyoming Sheriff’s office said his officers assisted in a search for a missing minor, but said he could not make a statement on the events because it was being handled by the Caribou-Targhee National Forest Service District. Forest service officials also confirmed there was an incident, but were not yet releasing information. Signs have been posted in the area warning visitors of bear activity, but there have been no trail closures.

Washington 06/30/12 spokesman.com: by Daniel Person – A wolf killed one sheep and injured two others on a small Nine Mile Falls ranch earlier this month, the state’s wildlife agency said Friday, marking the first wolf attack on livestock in Spokane County since at least the early 1950s. Steve Pozzanghera, eastern region director for the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife, said Friday two brothers woke up June 16 to see their flock of about 15 sheep in the pasture and away from the pen area where they normally gather in the morning. The men, who are not identified in the incident report, rode four-wheelers out to the flock, where they said they saw a lone wolf chasing one of the sheep. The animal then ran away. A subsequent investigation by the Fish and Wildlife Department determined that the predator was a gray wolf, Pozzanghera said. Helping confirm that it was a wolf kill was the severity of the wounds – wolves have “incredible jaw strength” – and tracks found in the area, he said. “You’re not talking about a dog-size track,” Pozzanghera said. The incident report lists the location of the attack as 11000 N. Pinebluff Road. The department announced that it had confirmed the predation as a wolf kill on Friday. – For complete article see http://www.spokesman.com/stories/2012/jun/30/wolf-kills-one-sheep-injures-two-others-in/

Coyote Attacks:

California 06/29/12 San Anselmo, Marin County: A 2-year-old cat is recovering after his owner rescued him from the mouth of a coyote in the backyard of their Rosemont Avenue home on Wednesday. – See http://www.marinij.com/sananselmo/ci_20974519/san-anselmo-cat-survives-coyote-attack?source=most_emailed

Maine 06/30/12 Kennebunk, York County: A family dog is recovering after being rescued from a coyote by her owner Thursday night. – See http://www.wcsh6.com/news/article/205698/2/Tipper-the-dog-survives-coyote-attack

Mountain Lion Sightings:

California 06/30/12 Woodside, San Mateo County: A mountain lion was seen walking along a trail in Huddart Park at 1100 Kings Mountain Road Friday night. – See http://www.mercurynews.com/peninsula/ci_20979832/mountain-lion-seen-walking-along-woodside-park-trail

Colorado 07/02/12 Loveland, Larimer County: A man working in his yard near 41st Street and Taft Avenue reported a mountain lion resting in a tree above him. – See http://www.reporterherald.com/news/loveland-local-news/ci_20991215/mountain-lion-hangs-out-loveland-yard

Eastern Equine Encephalitis (EEE):

Georgia 07/02/12 Lakeland, Lanier County: Health officials have confirmed another case of EEE in a horse. This is the fourth case in a horse found in South Georgia this year. – See http://www.wtxl.com/content/topstories/story/Horse-tests-positive-for-EEE-in-Lanier-Co/vHxNMsPo3kW7_03QSuANZg.cspx

Louisiana 07/02/12 Iberia Parish: The state veterinarian’s office has reported a horse infected with EEE in the parish. – See http://www.katc.com/news/west-nile-detected-in-iberia-parish/

West Nile Virus (WNV):

Yavapai County

Arizona 07/03/12 Yavapai County: A large body of standing water tested positive for WNV. Health officials and the property owner are working to resolve the situation, which was due to improper irrigation techniques and/or faulty ditch gates. – See http://verdenews.com/main.asp?SectionID=1&SubSectionID=1&ArticleID=48914

California 07/02/12 Los Angeles County: WNV has been found in mosquitoes in Newhall, Encino and Silverlake. A dead crow was found to be infected with the virus in Toluca Lake. This is the first time the virus has been detected in Rowland Heights this year. – See http://www.sgvtribune.com/news/ci_20991276/west-nile-virus-detected-mosquitoes-collected-rowland-heights

Marion County

Indiana 07/02/12 Marion County: Public health officials said two samples of mosquitoes, one taken from Warren Township and another in Perry Township, tested positive for the WNV. – See http://www.fox59.com/news/wxin-health-officials-confirm-mosquitoes-carrying-west-nile-virus-found-in-marion-co-20120702,0,3929153.column

Iberia Parish

Louisiana 07/02/12 Iberia Parish: Officials have found WNV in mosquito samples. – See http://www.katc.com/news/west-nile-detected-in-iberia-parish/

Michigan 07/02/12 Saginaw and Washtenaw counties: A mosquito abatement commission in Saginaw County tested a mosquito pool and detected WNV, officials said. Also, a wild turkey in Washtenaw County that displayed signs of the virus was checked at Michigan State University, and it tested positive. – See http://www.mlive.com/news/grand-rapids/index.ssf/2012/07/precautions_against_west_nile.html

Minnesota 07/03/12 South-Central: A human case of WNV has been confirmed in a St. Louis County after visiting a south-central part of the state. He was hospitalized and is recovering. – See http://www.startribune.com/lifestyle/health/161234225.html

Mississippi 07/03/12 Lauderdale County: District health officials have confirmed a human case of WNV in the county. – See http://www.wtok.com/news/mississippiheadlines/West_Nile_Virus_161254665.html

New York 07/03/12 Long Island: A mosquito sample taken from Gardiner County Park in Islip, and a dead crow found in Northport, have both tested positive for WNV. – See http://www.foxnews.com/health/2012/07/03/west-nile-virus-discovered-on-long-island/

Lake County

Ohio 07/02/12 Lake County: State health officials have confirmed a mosquito pool has tested positive for WNV. – See http://news-herald.com/articles/2012/07/02/news/doc4ff1f98f423b0283927825.txt


North Carolina 07/02/12 Silver Valley, Davidson County: A fox that ran from a resident’s garage and attacked him has tested positive for rabies. – See http://www.the-dispatch.com/article/20120702/News/307029988

Wisconsin 07/02/12 Wausau, Marathon County: The Marathon County Health Department is requesting help from the public in the search for a dog who bit a woman at Sunny Vale Park Sunday. The dog is a 6- or 7-year-old black lab mix and is not wearing a collar. The department needs to verify the dog’s vaccination status to prevent the woman from having to endure rabies shots. If you have information about this dog or know who owns it, contact the Marathon County Health Department at 715-261-1908, the Marathon County Dispatch at 715-849-7785 or the Humane Society at 715-845-2810.

COLORADO confirms BISON died of RABIES ~ RABBITS at COLORADO campground dying of TULAREMIA ~ CANADA: ALBERTA government fears CHRONIC WASTING DISEASE in DEER is quickly spreading westward ~ MOUNTAIN LION reports from CO, & KY ~ EASTERN EQUINE ENCEPHALITIS alert issued in FLORIDA ~ WEST NILE VIRUS reports from IL, MA, PA, & TX ~ RABIES reports from CA, GA, IL, NY, & NC.

American Bison. Photo by Sujit Kumar. Wikimedia Commons.

Colorado 06/29/12 coloradoan.com: A bison at CSU’s Foothills Campus has died from rabies, according to the Larimer County health department. The adult female bison died suddenly Thursday in her outdoor holding pen. The bison likely came into contact with a rabies-infected skunk, rabid fox or other wild animal, officials believe. Seventeen skunks have tested positive for rabies so far in the past two months. The death demonstrates the potential for skunks with rabies to spread this fatal disease to other susceptible animals through bites, said Dr. Adrienne LeBailly, director of the health department, in a news release. Samples from two other female bison from the same herd are being tested for rabies, and laboratory results are expected in the next few weeks. All three bison were part of a breeding project at CSU. The rest of the herd will be vaccinated.

The first rabid skunk identified in the Fort Collins area was found near the bison facility May 4. “Once skunk rabies is established in an area, it cannot be eradicated, and it can spread rabies to other mammals,” LeBailly said. “We may see cases in other species, such as foxes, coyotes, deer and livestock, making it important for owners to vaccinate their animals and keep their shots up to date.” Rabies is always fatal in animals, LeBailly said, and increases the risk of infection in the animals’ owners and handlers. “Prevention of rabies in an exposed person requires costly vaccination and preventive treatment before any symptoms appear; otherwise it is nearly always fatal,” she said. CSU’s Veterinary Teaching Hospital is located several miles from the Foothills Campus, where the bison were housed. All resident animals at Veterinary Teaching Hospital at Colorado State University are vaccinated, according to officials, who recommend all animal owners have their animals vaccinated, as well.

Colorado 06/29/12 nps.gov: News Release – On June 28, 2012, monument staff were notified by wildlife health officials with the National Park Service that a rabbit from the Gates of Lodore Campground at Dinosaur National Monument tested positive for tularemia in laboratory tests. Monument staff noticed several dead rabbits in the vicinity of the Gates of Lodore Campground starting last week and sent a specimen for analysis. Rabbits exhibiting the effects of tularemia, a naturally occurring disease that periodically strikes rabbits, hares, rodents, have only been found in the Gates of Lodore Campground. This campground is in the extreme northern part of Dinosaur approximately 106 miles north of the Canyon Visitor Center in Dinosaur, Colorado and 137 miles north of the Dinosaur Quarry near Jensen, Utah. There have been no confirmed cases or noticeable outbreaks in any other areas of the monument. Since the threat to human health is considered minimal by health officials, the campground and boat launch for the Green River will remain open. Signs, informing visitors of the presence of tularemia will be posted in the campground and monument staff will make contact with visitors to let people know the disease is present in the area. – For complete news release see http://www.nps.gov/dino/parknews/tularemia-confirmed-in-rabbit-population-at-gates-of-lodore-campground.htm


Alberta 06/29/12 calgaryherald.com: by Kelly Cryderman – Chronic wasting disease in deer continues its march westward from Saskatchewan, bolstering scientific predictions the animal affliction will reach the outskirts of Calgary and Edmonton within the decade. Even the current low levels of chronic wasting disease (CWD) are painstakingly monitored by the Alberta government because of its relation to bovine spongiform encephalopathy, the neurodegenerative prion disease in cattle, and concern CWD found in deer, elk and moose may someday spread to humans. The most recent provincial data, published Thursday in Sustainable Resource Development’s annual report, indicates CWD was discovered in 33 of 3,194 tested deer in southeastern Alberta last year, the highest number ever found. The wasting disease is also spreading to new parts of the province. Hunters say the government needs to bolster its CWD testing programs to include all of Alberta. “The major concern is it’s spreading into the animals and I don’t think anyone knows whether it can be transferred to humans or not, like BSE,” said Alberta Fish and Game Association president Conrad Fennema.

Deer with CWD.

The numbers are going up, incrementally. Only four deer with CWD were found in 2005, the first year the disease was detected in the province. More recently, 13 infected deer were discovered in 2009, and 20 in 2010. The annual report said since the government halted a winter cull program in areas where sick deer were found, “CWD has steadily increased in prevalence and geographic distribution, including resurgence in areas where previous disease control had reduced its occurrence.” – For complete article see http://www.calgaryherald.com/news/Chronic+wasting+disease+deer+continues+steady+march+west/6859203/story.html

Mountain Lion Sightings:

Colorado 06/29/12 Alamosa, Alamosa County: Two local people walking with their dogs June 25th in the vicinity of Adams State College encountered a mountain lion but managed to escape unharmed. – See http://www.alamosanews.com/v2_news_articles.php?heading=0&page=72&story_id=25447

Kentucky 06/29/12 Ashland, Boyd County: Local police have issued a city wide mountain lion alert after sightings were reported in the Forest Court and Eloise Street neighborhoods, which are on opposite ends of the city. – See http://www.wsaz.com/news/headlines/Possible_Moun_160768145.html

Eastern Equine Encephalitis (EEE):

Florida 06/29/12 Wellington, Palm Beach County: Health officials have issued an EEE alert after confirming a sick horse that was put down last week had contracted the virus. The mosquito that transmits the virus has also been found in local traps. – See http://www.palmbeachpost.com/news/news/authorities-report-wellington-horse-had-equine-enc/nPh5w/

West Nile Virus (WNV):

Illinois 06/28/12 DuPage County: Health officials confirm that mosquitoes collected in Hinsdale and Clarendon Hills have tested positive for WNV. – See http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/local/suburbs/hinsdale/chi-jnt391929-hinsdale-west-nile-virus-20120628,0,7939592.story

Massachusetts 06/29/12 Pittsfield, Berkshire County: A mosquito collected June 26th has tested positive for WNV. – See http://www.golocalworcester.com/health/new-west-nile-virus-sample-found-in-western-mass/

Pennsylvania 06/29/12 Macungie, Lehigh County: Mosquito samples from Lower and Upper Macungie have tested positive for WNV. – See http://lowermacungie.patch.com/articles/west-nile-virus-found-in-lower-macungie

Texas 06/20/12 Southlake, Tarrant County: A mosquito sample collected in the Monticello neighborhood has tested positive for WNV. – See http://impactnews.com/articles/west-nile-confirmed-along-southlake-colleyville-border


California 06/29/12 El Dorado County: A skunk captured after it was seen chasing cars and exhibiting aggressive behavior near a movie theater in the 300 block of Placerville Drive has tested positive for rabies. – See http://www.sacbee.com/2012/06/29/4600071/caution-urged-as-rabid-skunk-captured.html

Georgia 06/29/12 Macon, Bibb County: A fox that bit a man last week on Summerhill Drive has tested positive for rabies. – See http://www.newscentralga.com/news/local/Neighbors-want-city-to-clean-up-after-fox-tests-positive-for-rabies-160901885.html

Illinois 06/29/12 Adeline, Ogle County: Five girls are receiving rabies shots after potentially being exposed to the virus at the White Eagle 4-H Camp. The girls said campground officials told them it was safe to sleep in a cabin though they knew bats had been inside the building earlier. – See http://www.oglecountynews.com/2012/06/29/rabies-shots-follow-bat-presence/aq7gjwy/

New York 06/29/12 Canton, St. Lawrence County: A sick raccoon that was still producing milk for its young has tested positive for rabies. Health officials are warning the public to be aware there may be young raccoons in the area infected with the virus. This is the second rabid raccoon found in the county this year. – See http://northcountrynow.com/news/canton-raccoon-second-test-positive-rabies-june-060769

North Carolina 06/29/12 Shelby, Cleveland County: At least five members of one family living in an apartment complex are receiving rabies shots after potentially being exposed to rabies. Residents say the Mayfield Townhome apartments are overrun with bats. The property owner said he has hired exterminators to resolve the problem. – See http://www.gastongazette.com/news/bats-72759-apartment-overrun.html

COLORADO confirms MOUNTAIN LION attacked DOG on Tellurium Lake Trail ~ 20 ARKANSANS potentially exposed to RABIES playing with DOG ~ Other RABIES reports from AR, AL, FL, IL, NY, OR, & VA ~ WEST NILE VIRUS reports from AZ, IL, MO, & NJ.

Mountain Lion. Photo by New York Department of Conservation.

Colorado 06/27/12 aspendailynews.com: A dog was critically injured this weekend when a cougar attacked while the dog was off-leash on the Tellurium Lake Trail near Ruedi Reservoir. Colorado Parks and Wildlife public information officer Mike Porras confirmed that the department received a report of the attack, which occurred Saturday afternoon. According to the report, a group was hiking down, with their dog off-leash about 20 feet in front, when they heard a scream. They ran to the scene, and saw a mountain lion holding the dog in its mouth. The hikes startled the predator, which dropped the dog and ran off. The dog is in critical condition with broken skull bones. Visitors to the area are encouraged to use caution and keep dogs either on leash, or at least under voice command. “Mountain lions are opportunistic predators,” Porras said, noting that attacking a dog that is separated from humans doesn’t qualify as unusual behavior for a mountain lion. Even if letting a dog run off-leash is legal in a particular backcountry area, “it is far, far safer … to keep the dog on a leash,” he said.


Arkansas 06/26/12 todaysthv.com: by Lindsey Tugman – Misinformation about the proper timing for vaccination has led to the loss of a family pet and more than 20 possible human exposures to rabies in Saline County.  The Arkansas Department of Health has confirmed cases of rabies in both a family dog in Saline County and in a skunk living less than a mile away. This brings the total number of animals that have tested positive for rabies this year to 83, well above average. We tracked down one Saline County family who came in contact with the dog. Teresa Penix, her husband, and four children are waiting to be vaccinated for rabies, but her dogs are okay. The family visited a neighbor who took in a dog in rural Saline County. “The friend had a dog that was running, jumping and found out he tested positive for rabies,” says Penix.

At the time of their visit, the dog seemed fine but she did not know the dog didn’t have its rabies vaccinations. “We all played with the dog. The dog looked healthy,” says Penix. We found the Penix family through word of mouth. Yet, the state is remaining tight-lipped on exactly who is getting vaccinated or where this happened. “This was an area west of the city of Benton along Highway 70 and it doesn’t matter pinpointing it more because it could be anywhere,” says Dr. Susan Weinstein. Penix says her doctor’s office doesn’t have vaccine on hand, but will have it soon. Meantime, she remains tense and afraid, not knowing if her family’s been exposed to rabies. “You want your animals protected and you want your family protected,” says Penix.

The dog became ill around June 13, and progressively declined until it was euthanized and submitted for rabies testing. A number of people exposed to this dog will be undergoing a series of rabies vaccinations to prevent the development of the disease. The dog had killed a skunk approximately six weeks prior to getting sick, and had likely been bitten by the skunk at that time. The dog was not vaccinated against rabies because it was still a puppy and the owners mistakenly thought that it could not receive a rabies vaccine until it was six months old. Rabies vaccines generally are administered by veterinarians at 12 to 16 weeks of age for a dog or cat. – For complete article see http://www.todaysthv.com/news/article/215822/2/Rabid-dog-skunk-found-in-Saline-County

Arkansas 06/27/12 Hot Springs, Garland County: A bat found inside a woman’s apartment has tested positive for rabies. – See http://arkansasmatters.com/fulltext?nxd_id=554632

Alabama 06/25/12 Troy, Pike County: A raccoon that attacked a young girl at North Ridge Circle has tested positive for rabies. – See http://www.troymessenger.com/2012/06/25/health-department-troy-girl-attacked-by-rabid-raccoon/

Florida 06/26/12 Bascom, Jackson County: A raccoon that fought with and was killed by two dogs on Wintergreen Road has tested positive for rabies. – See http://www2.jcfloridan.com/news/2012/jun/26/rabid-raccoon-found-close-bascom-ar-4042396/

Illinois 06/27/12 Shelbyville, Shelby County: A bat captured in rural Shelbyville has tested positive for rabies. This is the first positive rabies test in bats in the county since 1990. – See http://shelbyvilledailyunion.com/x439053624/Bat-Rabies-Reported-in-Shelby-County

New York 06/26/12 Malta, Saratoga County: The Saratogian – A young boy who was bitten by a pit bull last week is hoping the community can help him avoid a painful series of rabies shots. The 12-year-old boy was bitten by the dog at about 6 p.m. Monday, June 18, on the sidewalk in front of Chango Elementary School. According to the boy’s mother, who spoke at a Malta Town Board meeting Tuesday but did not want to be identified, the dog’s owner did nothing to prevent the attack and, after the boy had been bitten, simply said her dog “does not like kids” and walked away. Malta Town Supervisor Paul Sausville issued a statement Tuesday morning asking for the public’s help in locating the white pit bull. Sausville asked anyone who thinks they may be familiar with the dog in question to contact Malta Animal Control Officer Don Stack, 432-2737, or the Saratoga County Sheriff’s Office, 885-6761. Sausville said Stack has been patrolling the area where the attack occurred but has not been able to locate the dog. The town clerk also combed through the town’s dog license registry, but there is no sign of the dog. “They’ve been working on it diligently since the incident happened a week ago,” Sausville said. “We’re optimistic we can find this dog.” If the dog is not located, the child will have to begin the series of rabies shots Thursday.

Oregon 06/27/12 Marion County: A bat found inside a home northwest of Salem has tested positive for rabies. – See http://www.sfgate.com/news/article/Bat-found-near-Salem-tests-positive-for-rabies-3668236.php

Virginia 06/27/12 Isle of Wight County: by Mike Connors – A fox and a raccoon acting aggressively recently at Windsor Castle Park have tested positive for rabies. On June 14, a raccoon approached a couple on a trail and was beaten off with a walking stick, according to an Isle of Wight County Sheriff’s Office news release today. On Saturday, a fox near a trail entrance on Sykes Court attacked a man before being fended off. Both animals were picked up, and later tested positive for rabies, the release said. No one was hurt in either incident. – See http://hamptonroads.com/2012/06/two-animals-isle-wight-co-test-positive-rabies

West Nile Virus:

Arizona 06/27/12 Maricopa County: Public health officials confirm that a woman in her 30s is the first human case of West Nile Virus in the county this year. – See http://www.kpho.com/story/18895143/maricopa-county-gets-first-west-nile-case-of-2012

Illinois 06/27/12 Adams County: Health officials have found a mosquito sample in the county that tested positive for West Nile Virus. – See http://www.whig.com/story/18892401/first-west-nile-virus-sample-found-in-adams-county

Missouri 06/27/12 St. Louis County: Public health officials confirm that mosquitoes carrying West Nile Virus have been found in Bel-Ridge, Normandy, Olivette, Jennings, Lemay, and unincorporated North County. – See http://www.ksdk.com/news/article/325916/3/Mosquitoes-test-for-West-Nile-Virus-in-St-Louis-County-

New Jersey 06/27/12 Union County: Four out of 63 mosquito pools analyzed in the county so far this season have tested positive for West Nile Virus: two in Clark, one in Summit, and one in Cranford. – See http://www.nj.com/cranford/index.ssf/2012/06/mosquitoes_test_positive_for_w.html