Black Death Strikes California Campgrounds!

By Heather

What is this? The 1300s?

One of our favorite campgrounds, Table Mountain, was partially shut down last week because a dead squirrel tested positive for the plague.

You know, the plague. Old-timey plague. Hold on, I’m getting the vapors!

Okay, but seriously. The plague is kind of scary, and this plague in particular is a little unnerving because we had just been to Table Mountain days before the squirrel was found.

Fortunately, I had taken Nabby to the vet for her usual full checkup the week after our trip to Table Mountain. The timing was coincidental, but she had a full blood test and chem screen, so we could rest easy that she did not have the plague.

I also looked up the symptoms of the plague in humans, just to make sure neither of us had it. If Dr. Google is to be believed, we don’t. Phew!

Swollen lymph nodes are one of the telltale signs that you’ve got yourself a nasty case of the Black Death. If you’ve been camping or hanging out in a plague-y area and your lymph nodes are swollen (or you feel achy and feverish), go to the ER.

Bring out your dead! Bring out your dead!

I thought plague was just an old-fashioned disease, but not so much. It pops up in various places each year; modern technology and understanding just makes it easier to control.

It’s spread by fleas and rodents that have been bitten by fleas. If you plan to go to an area where there’s any concern about this kind of thing, make sure your pup is up on flea medications and keep your dog on a leash to minimize contact with rodents.

If you’re a human, use hardcore DEET bug spray and don’t cuddle any squirrels no matter how cute they are.

The CDC is all over it with their tips, too.

Table Mountain is being sprayed for fleas right now and it sounds like the loops that were closed will reopen soon. I’m not sure if we’ll go back again this season, or if we’ll wait until it’s completely in the clear.

Stay tuned!