West Nile Virus Threat Now at ‘Moderate’ Level in Belmont
Article from the Belmont Patch, August 16, 2012
By Franklin Tucker
An unidentified man from Cambridge is this year’s first person to be infected by the West Nile Virus in Massachusetts, according to the state’s Department of Health and Human Services.
As result of the human case, West Nile threat levels have been raised to “moderate” in Arlington, Belmont, Cambridge, Somerville and Watertown, according to the press release.
The man is in his 60s, according to a Wednesday press release from the Department of Health and Human Services. The man was diagnosed with West Nile Virus in late July, the release said; he remains hospitalized but is recovering.
Testing conducted in early August found the virus in mosquito pools in Belmont and surrounding communities including Arlington, according to state data.
Mosquitoes infected by the virus have been found in 48 communities and nine counties in Massachusetts so far this year, according to the press release.
Nationally, the West Nile virus is hitting several communities hard including Dallas where it has been said by officials to be at epidemic levels.
Symptoms, Treatment of West Nile Virus
Prevention tips from the Department of Health and Human Services:
Avoiding Mosquito Bites
•Be Aware of Peak Mosquito Hours – Walk your dog as little as possible during the hours from dusk to dawn. Those hours are peak biting times for many mosquitoes. Take extra care to use repellent on your dog; people too, and wear protective clothing.
Mosquito-Proof Your Home
•Drain Standing Water – Mosquitoes lay their eggs in standing water. Limit the number of places around your home for mosquitoes to breed by either draining or getting rid of items that hold water. Check rain gutters and drains. Empty any unused flowerpots and wading pools, and change water in birdbaths frequently.~
•Install or Repair Screens – Some mosquitoes like to come indoors. Keep them outside by having tightly-fitting screens on all of your windows and doors.
While the Arlington Health Department continues to work closely with the MDPH and other agencies, locally the Town of Arlington is larvaciding all catch basins to prevent the growth of human biting mosquitoes and inspecting properties and working with residents to remove sources of standing water.
Information about WNV and reports of WNV activity in Massachusetts during 2012 can be found on the MDPH website at www.mass.gov/dph under A for arbovirus in the Health Topics A to Z index. Recorded information about WNV is also available by calling the MDPH Public Health Information Line at 1-866-MASS-WNV (1-866-627-7968).
Crate Escape has carried this line of natural remedies for pets since we opened in 2004. Herbal remedies have been used since the beginning of time. Animal anthropologists have shown that animals are natural herbalists as they instinctively know how to choose specific herbs for their healing properties. Ark’s herbal remedies use the leaves, roots, bark, flowers and seeds to aid the healing process. Many modern prescription drugs are chemical derivatives of compounds isolated from herbs. Holistic veterinarians believe that because the herbs have not been chemically altered, they offer a gentler approach and help to reduce frustrating side effects.
I talked to Ark’s home office about the ‘Flea Flicker Tick Kicker’ that we carry. It advertises ‘naturally repels and kills fleas, ticks, mosquitoes on contact’. I asked if this was true for the West Nile mosquito. She said Ark could not guarantee- but she sounded confident that it would work. Ark does support avoiding the dusk to dawn hours to walk your dog, whenever possible and to spray twice a week instead of once.
SHEEEE’ SSS BACK!!
Actually, this year, I was almost ready to come home from the beach. Really, just give me 1 or 2 more months and I would definitely be ready! As I have told you, being Top Dog comes with a lot of responsibilites. I might have to hire my own driver to get me back and forth to Charlestown; my dog bowl is so full. So what would that car look like? There must be dog limos out there with water, lots of treats, food and toys. Look into it for me will you?