What Diseases Do Groundhogs Carry?
There is a very widespread misconception that groundhogs carry very many diseases. However, in recent years, studies have shown that groundhogs are only carries to a small number of diseases. However, they may also carry parasites like fleas which are very dangerous to your health. What are some of the vermin or diseases that groundhogs carry?
This is the most common diseases that groundhogs carry. Symptoms of a rabid groundhog include the presence of foam in the mouth, full or partial paralysis and also aggression. Rabies is a very dangerous disease to human beings and infected people should seek medical attention within the next few hours after infection. However, it should be noted that it is very rare to come across a rabid groundhog, but once you see one, you should steer clear of it and call animal control services if there are many of them.
Recent studies that groundhogs and other rodents are carries of the Hepatitis causing micro-organisms. There is no way to know whether a groundhog is suffering from Hepatitis but you can get tested from time to time if your area has a large population of groundhogs.
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It is a fact that almost all small animals like rodents carry fleas. Fleas are very tiny insects that feed on human and animal blood. Fleas have been known to transmit certain worms like tapeworm larvae from one animal to another. They may also transfer bubonic plague from rodents to humans but that is not very common. Some characteristics of a flea-bite include; an extremely itchy spot, redness in the itchy spot that may also swell, the spot may turn into a small wound in less than a day.
Ticks are small wingless arachnids that stick themselves on the skins of animals and stay alive by feeding on the blood of these host animals. There are very many animals that carry ticks around. Domestic animals like cows and pets like dogs are some of the animals that can be affected by ticks. Human beings are not affected by ticks. Although ticks themselves do not cause any diseases, they are very dangerous when many since they can cause anemia in domestic animals. In addition, ticks are known to carry bacteria that can cause diseases like: Lyme disease and Tularemia. This means that they can transfer this disease causing micro-organisms from one animal to another. Although the ticks are not a danger to human beings, they affect the health of animals dear to man for example dogs. Groundhogs are one of the many animals that carry ticks and should thus be kept away from your homes and gardens.
As seen above, groundhogs do not really carry many diseases; they just carry small parasites that pose health risks to humans and animals alike. In case you see a groundhog that is infected with fleas, you should consider buying anti-flea chemicals since the fleas are easily transmitted to animals and humans.
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