A squirrel in Colorado has tested positive for the bubonic plague, according to local authorities.
According to a report published by the Jefferson County Public Health Department, a protein found in Morrison was infected with bubonic plague. Authorities warn that rodents can infect humans and animals if proper precautions are not taken. The disease can be transmitted from flea bites and infected animals.
The disease has existed for several centuries and is the cause of the deadliest pandemic in human history. An estimated 50 million people in Europe died during the Black Death in the Middle Ages.
Although modern antibiotics can prevent complications and death, if treated quickly enough, they still pose a serious threat. If left untreated, the bubonic plague can turn into a pulmonary form, which can cause pneumonia after the bacteria spread to the lungs, and then death.