“Zombie Deer Disease” is on the Rise in Pennsylvania
I have never heard of 'Zombie Deer Disease' and honestly I wish I hadn't. The last thing I want to picture in my head is a deer roaming around like the walking dead. But here we are. And apparently this disease is on the rise right here in Pennsylvania.
The disease is actually called Chronic Wasting Disease. However, the nickname came about because it essentially takes over a deer's brain and turns them into a zombie. According to Patch, Chronic Wasting Disease is a highly contagious disease that develops very slowly in the lymph nodes, spinal tissue and brains of deer. This can also happen to animals similar to deer. It is often compared to Mad Cow disease which is also a brain disorder that enables a cow from functioning properly. According to Patch, as of May 2021 there have been 722 positive cases of the disease reported in PA.
"The infection is believed to be caused by abnormal proteins called prions, which are thought to cause damage to other normal prion proteins that can be found in tissues throughout the body but most often in the brain and spinal cord, leading to brain damage and development of prion diseases," the CDC said.
Thankfully, there is no evidence that this disease can be transmitted to humans. It has gotten so bad in PA over the years that a Warren County hunting preserve has been shut down for 5 years and is still under quarantine.
This sounds scary, I know. Imagine encountering a deer on the side of the road in the middle of the night, and its eyes are blood shot red, neck snapped to the side and drooling all over the place. Its a real life nightmare.
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