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Hi. My neighbor who has 3 dogs has recently become very ill. He had this extremely awful rush… Afterwards I’ve learned that he was diagnosed with Rocky Mountain spotted fever. I have two kids – Mike is 9 and Lora is 11 – and they really like to play with the dogs. But, now, I’m not letting them - I’m afraid they might get infected too. What exactly is the Rocky Mountain spotted fever and how is it transferred?? Is there a way I can protect my children??? Please, help me!!!

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Rocky Mountain spotted fever is an acute infectious disease usually transmitted to humans by the bite of an infected tick. Both children and adults can be affected by it and you have every right to be worried. It is spread by the bite of an infected tick while it cannot be transferred person to person. Therefore, your neighbor is not contagious, but I guess his dogs are. So, be sure to keep your kids away from them. But, even if they somehow get infected, there is a successful antibiotics treatment to deal with the disease. There is a lot you can do to prevent your kids getting it - check their clothing for ticks, tuck long pants into their socks and boots, check yourself and your children every two to three hours for ticks and, if all that is not enough, use some repellent.
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