Several cats in Wyoming have now been diagnosed with the bubonic plague. How? They strayed from their owners’ property and likely acquired the disease from wild rodents or fleas, which can be infected in the western U.S.
You don’t have to worry about an epidemic of medieval proportions. The chances are virtually nil that you’re going to get the disease from your pet. Do know, however, that animals infected with bubonic plague may experience swelling in the neck and face area, fever, lethargy, vomiting, and diarrhea. For the average of seven people each year who get the plague in the U.S., the symptoms are similar.
Fortunately, the disease once known as “the black death,” which wiped out up to half the European population in the fourteenth century, can be cured with antibiotics if caught early.