Friday, December 9, 2016

Plague in the news: Here, kitty kitty kitty

CDC report of domestic cats in Idaho who were diagnosed with the plague.

Cat-associated human plague cases, including fatalities, have been reported in the western United States since 1977 (3). Compared with dogs, cats are highly susceptible to plague illness and can transmit disease to humans directly through exposure to respiratory droplets and infectious body fluids associated with bites or scratches (1). Cats could also carry infected fleas into households.

no human cases, but it can be spread to humans so the pet owners are being put on alert.


related item: Plague carrying squirrels.

PJMedia has an article remembering how children were urged to kill plague carrying squirrels during World War I... \

George H. Hecke, commissioner of California's State Horticulture Commission, created what would be known as the "Squirrel Army." The effort was presented as an extension of the United States' declaration of war on Germany, which was made the previous year.
“We have enemies here at home more destructive, perhaps, than some of the enemies our boys are fighting in the trenches," said Hecke. By organizing “a company of soldiers" in their classes or in schools, children were encouraged to help annihilate their ultimate foe—the ground squirrel.
The rodents were a source of bubonic plague back then, and the cause of an estimated $30 million in crop devastation. That's equivalent to $480 million today. Hecke called for "Squirrel Week," which ended up being seven days of murder and mayhem.


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