On November 1, the Larimer County Department of Health and Environment (LCDHE) was notified that a domestic animal in the Red Feather Lakes area tested positive for Plague.
In response, LCDHE’s infectious disease experts investigated to determine potential human exposures and to assess the general area for additional Plague concerns. The people known to have been exposed to the animal have been recommended for antibiotic treatment to prevent the Plague from developing. A NextDoor notification and “Plague health alert” signs will be posted in the general area to raise awareness and ask people to take precautions to prevent Plague. LCDHE will continue to monitor Plague activity in the area and maintain communication as appropriate.
Plague is a bacterial disease transmitted to humans by biting an infected flea. In humans, the symptoms are high fever, chills, headache, extreme fatigue, and tender or swollen lymph glands. LCDHE advises residents who experience these symptoms to contact their physician immediately. Larimer County’s last reported human case of Plague occurred in 2015.
Plague is endemic in Larimer County, and precautions to prevent plague should always be taken.
The public shouldn’t attempt to catch, feed, handle, or exterminate prairie dogs or any squirrel, chipmunk, rabbit, or other wild animal.
Pet owners should check with their veterinarian regarding tick and flea control for their pets. Sick pets should be examined promptly by a veterinarian.
Residents should also clear property of trash, lumber piles, and other areas where rodents and animals may live or hide.
Report rodent die-offs to the Larimer County Department of Health and Environment at 970-498-6775.
Additional information on plague can be found at www.larimer.gov/plague.