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Squirrel Diseases

Do Squirrels Carry Diseases?

Squirrels are common across the Mid-Atlantic region. Generally, these animals keep to themselves, preferring to forage in grassy yards or high up in trees. However, on occasion, these rodents may come into contact with humans. This can be worrisome for residents as squirrel bites, droppings, and parasites could cause diseases.


If a squirrel enters your home or business to build a nest, they might bring harmful parasites with them. These include ticks, which can transmit Lyme disease, as well as fleas. Accumulated squirrel feces and urine can also contain salmonellosis. Accidental exposure may cause nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, fever, and chills.

Tularemia and leptospirosis are a few less common squirrel diseases. Since squirrels pass the pathogens through a bite, it’s unlikely that most people run the risk of infection. These pests tend to run and stay away from humans, so the chances of them spreading these illnesses is small.

It’s also important to note that, while all mammals can carry rabies, small animals such as squirrels rarely survive long enough to spread the virus. However, if you find a sick or dead squirrel, you should not approach or touch it.

How to Avoid Squirrel Diseases

Squirrels keep their distance from people for the most part. However, if cornered or threatened, these animals may defend themselves. To be safe, it’s always best to leave the installation of exclusions or removal of the rodents to the professionals. If you have a problem, call Western Pest Services and consult with our expert staff today.

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