A young black bear in California suffers from a mysterious neurological disease (American Bear) Make them behave like dogs and soothe humans in a friendly way.
Although it sounds cute, this abnormal behavior greatly increases the bear’s chances of survival in the wild.
This BearAbout 1 year old, seems to have some form of infectious encephalitis-inflammation of the brain tissue may be caused by virus, bacterial, fungus And parasites, as well as part of the autoimmune response. But veterinarians are not sure what exactly caused this problem, or how quickly it spreads in the population.
Symptoms include significant head tilt, drowsiness, muscle tremors, seizures, turning around, significant underweight, and fearlessness of humans.
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Ann Bryant, executive director of the BEAR (Bear Educational Aversion Response) Alliance, said: “The reason why the infected bears are brought to our attention is because they approach people in a peaceful, friendly and non-aggressive way.” “They behave like dogs, not bears.”
Last year, four people with the disease were found, which is the highest number of cases since the disease was first detected in 2014. According to the California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW).
According to CDFW data, the number of black bears in California has increased from 10,000 to 15,00 individuals in 1982 to between 30,000 and 40,000 today. As a result, veterinarians are not too worried about the impact of this disease on the entire population.
Fearless young man
Although cases of encephalitis are rare, the symptoms make it very easy to spot an infected bear.
“The first bear I personally rescued was diagnosed with encephalitis in March 2018,” Bryant told Live Science. “She walked into a school and entered a classroom, where she was sitting among the children, acting very much like a friendly dog.”
In 2019, another bear that was infected was Watch the video Try to climb on the skis with the rider. The young man was eventually rescued after playing with his friends on skis and feeding him sandwiches. However, friendly behavior does not mean that humans can treat bears safely.
Kobe said: “Bears are very dangerous when they come into contact with people who might tame animals.” He said: “I feel uncomfortable with the public trying to deal with one or any of these bears.”
Conversely, if someone finds a bear showing symptoms of encephalitis, they should report it to CDFW.
Now, these two special bears live in an emergency center, where they must receive continuous medical care to control brain inflammation, but most other bears are not so lucky.
The bear that was recently discovered to have this disease was discovered in February. It was lying on the back of a truck parked on a residential property. It was very light and covered with fleas. It had to be put down due to poor health. According to Sacramento Bee.
Unfortunately, this tragic fate befalls most of the infected bears, who are unable to take care of themselves and seem to be abandoned by their mothers.
CDFW data shows that veterinarians from the Nevada Department of Wildlife (NDOW) first discovered encephalitis in a bear near Lake Tahoe on the California border in 2014.
Since then, CDFW has recorded 8 cases in California, although the actual number may be higher. Last year, half of the diagnosed cases were confirmed, but this does not necessarily mean that it is increasing.
Kobe said: “I don’t think this has increased.” “But now finally more research has been done, so we are more aware of this.”
Bryant said the disease does not seem to be spread among individual bears. This is encouraging for other populations, but it makes researchers confused about the reasons for this situation.
Bryant said: “The worst part of the threat to our bear market is that we are not sure what the cause is.” “The unknown is disturbing.”
Infected bears are taken to CDFW’s wildlife investigation laboratory, where they can be treated or more likely to be euthanized due to their poor physical condition.
Brandon Munk, a senior wildlife veterinarian at the CDFW Wildlife Investigation Laboratory, told Life Sciences: “A dead or euthanized bear should be subjected to an autopsy to determine the cause of death.” The assessment of the tissue can confirm whether the animal is suffering Have encephalitis.
Although veterinarians can recognize this disease, it turns out to be much more difficult to determine the cause of encephalitis.
Munch said: “Brain inflammation is likely to be the cause of the symptoms.” “Besides, we don’t know the specific mechanism that may be in play.
The underlying pathogen has been identified as the cause of encephalitis, but it has not been confirmed so far.
Munch said: “We have discovered five new viruses from black bears, and some of them are being pursued further and may be the cause of encephalitis.” “We are also cooperating with a research laboratory to further evaluate whether it may be a protozoan. Parasites.”
However, Munch said, it is also possible that a variety of pathogens can cause encephalitis.
Originally published in “Life Science”.