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Here's how to avoid exposure to the plague

Here's how to avoid exposure to the plague
(Centers for Disease Control and Prevention)

A child contracted the plague while visiting the Stanislaus National Forest and the Crane Flat Campground in Yosemite National Park in mid-July, state public health officials said.

The child, who's from L.A. County, is recovering, but officials are concerned others may contract the disease, according to the California Department of Public Health.

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The plague is an infectious bacterial disease carried by squirrels, chipmunks, other rodents and their fleas. Fleas feeding on sick or dead infected rodents can carry the infection to other animals or humans.

In California, infected animals will likely be found in the mountains, foothills and sometimes the coast.

Yosemite National Park will post signs advising visitors about the plague case.

But certain steps can be taken to avoid exposure to the plague, according to health officials:

— Never feed squirrels, chipmunks or other rodents, and never touch sick or dead rodents.

— Avoid walking, hiking or camping near rodent burrows.

— Wear long pants tucked into socks or boot tops to reduce exposure to fleas.

— Spray insect repellent containing DEET on socks and pant cuffs to reduce exposure to fleas.

— Keep wild rodents out of homes, trailers and outbuildings and away from pets.

For more California news, follow @VeronicaRochaLA

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