Zombie disease epidemic in CanadaDate: 09 April 2022 Tags: Miscellaneous
Deer population in western Canada has come under a strange communicable infection known as chronic wasting disease (CWD).
Chronic Wasting Disease is also known as Zombie disease and is threatening prairies of Canadian provinces of Alberta and Saskatchewan.
CWD is a prion disease that affects deer, elk, moose, sika deer and reindeer. The disease can be fatal for animals of all age.
Currently, there is no vaccine or treatment available to prevent infection from Chronic Wasting Disease.
The disease was first observed among the deer at a research facility in the US in the late 1960s. It later spread to wild population.
The zombie disease
An animal infected with CWD loses fear of humans and other dangerous predators. It can be transmitted through animal-to-animal contact.
The disease directly affects the animal’s nervous system and is always fatal.
Symptoms of the disease include drooling, paralysis, poor coordination, stumbling, depression, and behaviour changes. This resulted in the term ‘zombie’.
Risk for humans
Humans can be infected with the disease if they consume meat of the infected animal. Improper handling of carcass can make hunters vulnerable.
Authorities have asked people to test the animals before consuming its meat. The meat has to be avoided if it tests positive.