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Here Comes Summer

Summer is a great time to live in Central Oregon. Warm days and long evenings invite us to explore the great outdoors with family and pets. Have safe fun by being aware of potential health hazards.

Cheat grass (Bromus tectorum) is an invasive grass found everywhere in Central Oregon. It grows in long stalks with brushy stickers on the ends. Cheat grass easily gets caught in the hair between the toes, in ears, nose and under eyelids. Have your pet examined if you see them squinting, sneezing or chewing paws after being outside.

Mushrooms grow quickly during our wet spring days. They can cause a variety of symptoms including a drunken gait, vomiting, and muscle twitching. Examine your yard daily and remove them before they become a problem.

Algae bloom, also known as pond scum, can be spotted by its bluish-green, grassy or soupy appearance. Algae blooms occur in July and August in the Cascade Lakes. Blooms can affect the nervous system, liver, and digestive tract.  Symptoms include skin irritation, a staggering gait, sore throat, vomiting and diarrhea. Prevent your pets from swimming in suspicious looking water.

Salmon poisoning is a potentially fatal disease caused by ingesting a single-celled organism found in raw salmon. Signs include fever, vomiting, diarrhea and depression. Prevent it by properly disposing of waste after cleaning your fish. Tularemia is caused by bacteria that live in rabbits and rodents. It is transmitted by ticks, deer flies or by eating an infected animal. It causes severe sickness.

Our long evenings are a great time for walks. Be safe by leashing your pet to keep them away from other dogs and cars.

Have fun this summer and play safe.

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