Tularemia has been confirmed in a human in Larimer County. Dogs and cats also get tularemia by eating infected rabbits or other animals, by drinking contaminated surface water, through tick and deer fly bites, and though exposure to contaminated soil if the skin is broken.
If your pet shows symptoms of illness which may include fever, loss of appetite, enlarged lymph nodes, ulcers on the mouth and tongue, draining abscesses, nasal and eye discharge, and skin sores, take it to the veterinarian.
As in humans, tularemia is easily treated if diagnosed early in dogs and cats.
Steps people can take to prevent tularemia in their pets:
· Routinely apply flea and tick repellent to any pets that go outdoors. Talk to your veterinarian about which choice is best for your pet and follow label directions carefully.
· Keep your pets leashed when walking them outdoors and keep them away from dead animals.
· Keep pets from wandering in areas where sick or dead animals have been found.
· Don't let dogs or cats drink from surface waters (puddles, streams, and ponds) when outdoors.
· Do not feed them raw meat.
More information can be found on the Larimer County Health Website