A housecat has been diagnosed with pneumonic plague in rural western Laramie County. Over a dozen individuals who came into contact with the cat are currently being assessed by the Wyoming Department of Health to determine if they need to receive antibiotics. Plague is a serious bacterial infection that can be deadly if not treated promptly with antibiotics. The pneumonic form of plague can be easily transmitted from a coughing cat or other animal to a human. Humans can then breathe in the bacteria and develop pneumonic plague as well. Although health officials believe this is thought to be an isolated case, plague has been present in the area before with animal cases in 2005 and 2008 and is believed to be endemic in Wyoming wildlife.
Plague (pneumonic, cat )
Viruses and bacteria that cause severe to fatal disease in humans, and for which vaccines or other treatments are not available, such as Bolivian and Argentine hemorrhagic fevers, H5N1(bird flu), Dengue hemorrhagic fever, Marburg virus, Ebola virus, hantaviruses, Lassa fever, Crimean-Congo hemorrhagic fever, and other hemorrhagic or unidentified diseases. When dealing with biological hazards at this level the use of a Hazmat suit and a self-contained oxygen supply is mandatory. The entrance and exit of a Level Four biolab will contain multiple showers, a vacuum room, an ultraviolet light room, autonomous detection system, and other safety precautions designed to destroy all traces of the biohazard. Multiple airlocks are employed and are electronically secured to prevent both doors opening at the same time. All air and water service going to and coming from a Biosafety Level 4 (P4) lab will undergo similar decontamination procedures to eliminate the possibility of an accidental release.
LARAMIE COUNTY – A housecat has been diagnosed with pneumonic (the lung form) of plague in rural western Laramie County.
Plague, known as the Black Death during medieval times, is a serious bacterial infection that can be deadly if not treated promptly with antibiotics. The pneumonic form of plague can be easily transmitted from a coughing cat or other animal to a human. Humans can then breathe in the bacteria and develop pneumonic plague as well.
On October 26, the Wyoming Department of Health (WDH) notified Cheyenne-Laramie County Health Department (CLCHD) of a plague positive housecat submitted to the Wyoming State Veterinary Lab on October 21.
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