Colorado squirrel tests positive for bubonic plague

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A squirrel tested positive for bubonic plague in the city of Morrison, Colorado, public health officials in Jefferson County announced in a statement this weekend. The squirrel, discovered on Saturday, is the first case of plague in Jefferson County, the statement said.A Jefferson County public health spokesperson told CBS News on Tuesday that someone in Morrison reported seeing at least 15 dead squirrels in the city. Officials have tested one, and since it was positive for bubonic plague, they expect others to be infected as well.

In a statement, the authorities warned that plague, an infectious disease caused by the bacteria Yersinia pestis, can be contracted by humans and pets. They have stated that humans can be infected by flea bites, coughing from an infected animal, or coming into direct contact with the blood or tissue of an infected animal.

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