Fleas In Arizona Test Positive For The Plague
Fleas with the plague have been found in Arizona, after cases have already been confirmed in New Mexico. Find out where and how to protect yourself and your pets.
Back at the end of June, the New Mexico Department of Health confirmed 3 cases of the plague back in June. The 3 cases in New Mexico involved 3 elderly people that lived in Santa Fe County. Now it seems that 2 counties in Arizona has fleas that have now tested positive for the Bubonic plague. Public Health Officials are now warning residents about the infectious disease that killed millions during the Middle Ages, and saying it could be in other areas too.
Prairie dogs in Williams, Arizona started dropping dead on a resident's property which worried officials. Williams is located about 30 miles west of Flagstaff. Fleas from that area have been found to be carrying Yersinia pestis, also known as the plague.
Both Coconino County and Navajo County have confirmed cases of fleas in their counties carrying the plague. Th health department has now released a statement urging residents to "take precautions to reduce their risk of exposure to this serious disease, which can be present in fleas, rodents, rabbits and predators that feed upon these animals."
There are three ways you can be infected with the plague:
- Being bitten by an infected flea
- Contact with an infected animal
- Contact with a person with plague pneumonia
Health officials are now warning residents to not handle sick or dead animals, not allow your pets to roam outside in areas where they can get fleas and then infect humans. So far there are no cases in West Texas but better safe than sorry. Watch your animals and protect yourself.