Health officials have reported Colorado's first human plague case since 2015, but there's no need to panic.

The Denver Posreports that this new case is a strain of the plague that doesn't spread easily.

The individual contracted the disease after being exposed to sick squirrels earlier this year. Thankfully, they have recovered from it, and are not believed to have spread it to others.

However, it is still important to take the following precautions against the illness, which commonly spreads from fleas to rodents, dogs, and cats:

  • do not handle wildlife, particularly squirrels, prairie dogs, and rabbits
  • treat pets for fleas
  • avoid feeding wildlife
  • do not touch dead wildlife
  • call the health department if you see multiple dead animals

The plague is rarely fatal when combined with the proper treatment, but it is important to seek medical help immediately if you think you or your pet has contracted it.

Headaches, fevers, chills, weakness, and a swelling of the lymph nodes are all symptoms of the disease.

But, as long as you don't go around hugging wild prairie dogs, you should be okay.

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