Lake Tahoe health officials have released an official statement warning against an eminent threat of plague. After a chipmunk was found dead with traces of the bacteria, residents and visitors are warned to take extra precautions. Due to this, business and tourism are likely to be temporarily affected, increasing Lake Tahoe Outdoor Recreation Liability. As such, warn your customers to be mindful of the safety of their family and pets while around the lake.
The plague, which has been evident throughout the U.S. recently, is a bacterial disease that is spread by rodents and their fleas. The infected chipmunk was found in the Taylor Creek Recreation Area in El Dorado County, prompting Bob Hartman, the county’s interim Public Health Officer, to make the announcement.
In a written statement, Hartman warned “Individuals can greatly reduce their risk of becoming infected with plague by taking simple precautions, including avoiding contact with wild rodents and their fleas. Do not feed rodents in picnic or campground areas and never handle sick or dead rodents. Also, leave your pets at home when visiting areas with elevated plague risk.”
Those who have been in affected and surrounding areas are advised to be on high alert for symptoms including high fever, chills, nausea, weakness and swollen lymph nodes in the neck, armpit, or groin, according to the Winston-Salem Journal. If you or someone you know is experiencing these, seek medical attention right away as these can be early factors of plague. While it is curable in its early stages, untreated patients can suffer immense injury and even death.
Further, if your pet falls ill after being in the affected area, see a vet immediately. The Winston-Salem Journal also reassures that the U.S. Forest Service is working closely with El Dorado County and the California Department of Public Health in order to inform the general public on the dangers of plague in addition to monitoring plague-prone areas.
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