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Plague victim infected by dog, experts say

ONE of the three men who died of pneumonic plague in northwest China's Qinghai Province was infected by his dead dog, experts said after a forensic examination, Xinhua News Agency reported today.

The man, a 64-year-old resident of Ziketan in Hainan Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture in Qinghai, was infected after contact with his dog three days before his death, said Wang Hu, director of the Institute for Endemic Disease Prevention and Control in Qinghai.

The dog was infected with the disease earlier and also died. The man had probably treated it without taking any preventive measures, Wang said.

Another nine people, mostly relatives of one of the victims who died, were infected in Ziketan. They were quarantined on July 31, said Dong Fukui, deputy government chief of Hainan prefecture, which has jurisdiction over Ziketan.

One of the nine was in critical condition as of Tuesday, the report said.

Experts said the disease is under control and unlikely to spread. It is safe to travel in Qinghai.

The plague is a highly contagious lung disease spread through the air and can be passed from person to person. It is capable of killing humans within 24 hours of infection.


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