Contrary to widespread belief, squirrels pose much of a health hazard to humans. For instance, Grey squirrels can harbor a series of deadly infections according to an in-depth research by university of Glasgow scientists. Depending on their habitats, these rodents are vulnerable to diseases many of which are infectious to human. The study reveals that the rodents are hosts to Borrelia bacteria that causes Lyme disease. They also carry plague and fleas and other bacterial diseases one can contract through close contact with the animals.
Are squirrel droppings health risks?
Yes, the droppings should not be sidelined. As much as they are not the primary health risks, squirrels spray their urine and feces that pose the health risk of salmonella infections. The poops are also the source of leptospirosis- a bacterial contagion that manifest like a minor flu like ailment. It is characterized by:
What are the severe effects?
The mild conditions become life threatening when they are not contained. Symptoms such as internal bleeding and organ failures, especially the liver and kidney, develop and can ultimately be fatal. Mild doses of leptospirosis can be contained by administering antibiotics to the victims. Food poisoning or salmonella exhibits when one has severe diarrheas. One can avoid these diseases by maintaining a high level of hygiene and a strict regime of hand washing.
Other diseases spread by squirrels
In addition to plague and fleas, the rodents also spread tularemia- caused by Francisellatularensis bacteria. It effects through bites from infected animals or contact with dead or sick squirrels. Drinking contaminated water is another serious source of the disease just as bites from ticks and deer flies. To evade contracting a disease from the rodents, do not try to feed or handle them, particularly if they seem ill. Use pest repellant sprays in places where flea or tick bites may occur.
The Lyme disease
This is particularly a great concern among the many diseases passed by squirrels. It is fatal in many occasions and is causing a spur in the medical scenes. This is a disease that leads to an inflammatory disorder that not only affects the joints but also the heart. The Borrelia bacterium is carried around by ticks, when they bite you, there are high chances that you will contract the Lyme. It has a distinctive skin rash symptom together with headaches and muscle pains. The symptoms can break out 30 days after the bite. The contamination can be treated by use of antibiotics.
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