Tularemia, plague, West Nile virus, rabies, vesicular stomatitis – Wyoming State Veterinary Laboratory experts are cautioning residents to monitor not only their pets and livestock, but also themselves this summer.
Several cases of tularemia in wildlife and domestic animals have been diagnosed by the WSVL, including in Albany, Platte and Washakie counties, said Will Laegreid, WSVL director.
“There have been a number of human tularemia cases in Colorado this summer and two so far in Weston County, and we would like to prevent any more cases in Wyoming if possible,” Laegreid said. The Wyoming Department of Health reported the cases.
Caused by bacteria, tularemia – also called rabbit fever – is commonly associated with rabbits and rodents, he said, and outbreaks often coincide with booming rabbit populations, as seen in Wyoming this year.
“Tularemia may be quite serious in humans, who may become infected through direct contact with wild rabbits, prairie dogs, voles and other rodents through insect or tick bites or through ingestion of contaminated food or water,” said Laegreid.