A rare disease transmitted through contact with raccoon feces has left a New York City teenager blind in one eye and an infant brain damaged.
The city’s Department of Health warns parents to be on the alert for raccoon roundworm, which can cause nausea, nerve damage and even death. It says fewer than 30 cases have been reported in medical literature.
Hey, no big deal, right? Except wait a second, yes it is! You see, according to one of the New York Times‘ seminal pieces, freakin’ raccoons are everywhere in Gotham, just straight cold runnin’ amok.
ON the northern edge of Central Park, once the cool of evening has settled into the shadows, lately there have been curses, screams, tender feelings and raccoons. Big raccoons.
“I don’t know what to do; they’re big like a dog,” Odalis Peña, the building superintendent at 207 Central Park North, said with a shrug. In his 13 years working on this block across the street from the park, he said, he has never seen more raccoons — and certainly nothing like the one he says he spotted late last month. It seemed like a 10-pounder.
“Oh, he was so fast!”
OK, so they’re everywhere, they’re huge, and they’re spreading the raccoon roundworm, which is blinding and brain damaging everyone! So what can we do to STOP IT!?
Health department spokeswoman Sally Slavinski says parents should supervise children to keep them from eating raccoon feces. Droppings should be picked up using gloves and disposable bags and put in the trash.
Got that, everyone? Stop eating raccoon poop!