There is a new tick-borne illness on the rise. The Powassan Virus (or POW) is a rare but very serious disease found in New England and the Great Lakes region of the United States. The POW virus is spread by the bite of an infected deer tick, the same tick responsible for the spread of Lyme disease.
There is no known test for the virus in animals. It is also unknown at this time if the disease affects pets as it does humans. Symptoms of this disease in humans may present itself as fever, vomiting, weakness, confusion, loss of coordination and seizures. This is why prevention is so important – not only for your pets, but for you and your family as well! Remember that ticks can also hitch a ride in on your pets from the outdoors.
Call us at (978) 453-1784 if you have any questions or if you need help choosing the right tick prevention product for your pet.
Facts About the Powassan Virus
- In the state of Massachusetts, there have been 8 confirmed human cases of this virus within the last 10 years.
- Although a tick infected with Lyme disease takes approximately 24 hours to transmit the virus, the POW virus is said to be spread from tick to host much sooner.
- The POW virus has been known to cause meningitis and encephalitis and about 10% of those infected will not survive. Those who do recover will have long-term health problems.
- There is no cure, and treatment consists of supportive care, rest and fluids.
- Learn more here