Western Europe, Australia, Africa, The Near East, Eastern Asia, and the Federated
Malay States. It is similar to, but a much milder disease than, epidemic typhus, which is
transmitted from man to man by the human body louse and is not a disease of rodents.
c. Leptospirosis (Weil's Disease or Infectious Jaundice). Human infections
result from contact with the infected urine of animals, including rodents. The
spirochetes, which are found in water, mud, or on moist foods, may enter the human
body through the mucous membranes or through breaks in the skin. Infections in
persons who swim in contaminated waters are reported with increasing frequency.
Weil's disease is an occupational hazard to veterinarians, animal husbandmen,
slaughterhouse workers, and fish workers, as well as to all those who work or live in rat-
infested premises. Distribution of reservoirs of infection and of the leptospira is
probably worldwide. The disease is most prevalent in regions where rodents are
numerous, particularly in third world countries with warm, moist climates.
d. Ratbite Fever (Haverhill Fever) (Sodoku). Two diseases are included
under the general term of ratbite fever; one, also known as Haverhill fever, is caused by
Streptobacillus moniliformis; the other, also known as Sodoku, is caused by Spirillum
minor. The bacteria, which cause these disease are found on the teeth, gums, mucous
membrane of the mouth, and blood seeping from the tissues, as well as in the saliva
and the conjunctival secretions of infected rodents. The wound caused by the rat bite is
thus contaminated by these secretions. Blood from laboratory animals also is
sometimes a source of infection to man. Localized epidemics of Haverhill fever are
suspected from contaminated milk products, but the means of contamination is not
known. The distribution of the disease is worldwide. Proven cases have been reported
from Great Britain, Holland, Germany, Italy, East Africa, equatorial Africa, the US, the
West Indies, South America, the Philippine Islands, Indonesia, Australia, and India.
Sodoku is more prevalent in the Orient, particularly in Japan.
e. Tularemia. Tularemia is an infectious bacterial disease of wild animals and
man. The reservoirs of infection include many species of wild and some domesticated
animals; wild rabbit and hare, woodchuck, coyote, muskrat, opossum, tree squirrel,
quail, skunk, water rat of Europe, cat, deer, dog, fox, hog, sage hen, sheep, and bull
snake. The disease is transmitted through the bite of infected flies or ticks; by
inoculation of the skin or the conjunctival sac through handling infected animals, as in
skinning, dressing, or performing necropsies; or by fluids from infected flies, ticks, birds,
and mammals. The deerfly Chrysops discalis, the wood tick Dermacentor andersoni,
the dog tick Dermacentor variabilis, the Lone Star tick Ambloyomma americanum, and
in Sweden, the mosquito Aedes cinereus have all been associated directly with the
transmission of this disease in nature. Laboratory infections are relatively frequent.
Tularemia occurs throughout North America and in many parts of continental Europe
and Japan. It is unknown in Australia.
f. Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever. This is a rickettsial disease transmitted
from animal to animal and from animal to man through the bite or crushed tissues of
infected ticks. The vectors and reservoirs of the disease are infected ticks. Additional