Saskatchewan’s Ministry of Health is reminding residents to take precautions against hantavirus while taking care of spring cleaning.

People are most often exposed to hantavirus when cleaning up enclosed spaces after the winter. Deer mice, which carry the virus, tend to winter in spaces such as barns, sheds, grain bins, cottages, farm vehicles and garages.

“You can get infected by breathing in contaminated airborne particles from the droppings, urine and saliva of infected deer mice,” explained Dr. Denise Werker, the Deputy Chief Medical Health Officer for the province. “Hantavirus can cause a rare, but potentially fatal lung illness known as hantavirus pulmonary syndrome.”

When cleaning up enclosed spaces after the winter, where deer mice may have been staying to escape the cold, it is best to ventilate the building for at least 30 minutes before cleaning.

Use wet mopping methods, and wear goggles and a filter mask when cleaning areas with droppings. It is also recommended to use a  bleach disinfectant when cleaning those areas.

For upholstered furniture, it is recommended to steam clean, shampoo or spray the furniture and was clothes and bedding with detergent in hot water.

Symptoms of hantavirus pulmonary syndrome usually start to show one to six weeks after exposure. They include fever, muscle aches, coughs, headaches and nausea. Severe symptoms can be life-threatening.

It is recommended to seek urgent medical attention if you have a cough, fever and shortness of breath.

There have been 32 cases of hantavirus in Saskatchewan since 1994. Of those cases, 10 have been fatal.

More Ag News

Educating About African Swine Fever

The arrival of African swine fever (ASF) into Canada would be devastating to the pork industry. That from Dr. Egan Brockhoff with Prairie Swine Health Services, who gave a presentation last week at…

Fed Cattle Prices Remain Steady

Fed cattle prices have remained fairly steady over the past few weeks. Brian Perillat is a senior market analyst with Canfax. "Kind of in that transition between the yearlings getting cleaned up and…

Canola Working Group Planning To Meet In Winnipeg

The canola working group is planning to get together next week in Winnipeg. The group was set up to resolve the market access issue affecting Canada’s canola seed exports to China. This would be the…

Canola Working Group Holds First Meeting

The Government of Canada working group on canola held its inaugural meeting on April 4, 2019, to work together to resolve the market access issue affecting Canada’s canola seed exports to China.…

Hog Markets Remain Volatile

he hog markets remain extremely volatile, however, prices do look favourable for Canadian hog producers. That according to Tyler Fulton, Director of Risk Management with Hams Marketing Services. "The…

Breakthrough as Durum Genome Sequenced

An international consortium, including researchers from the University of Saskatchewan, has sequenced the entire genome of durum wheat. The announcement was made this week after an article was…

APAS Meetings Continue in Saskatoon

The Agricultural Producers Association of Saskatchewan has been conducting their annual policy meeting in Saskatoon this week. As expected, the summit has seen a lot of discussion about the carbon… is West Central Saskatchewan's only source for community news, weather, and information.

Search the Biz Guide