LOS ANGELES (CBSLA) — An outbreak of flea-borne typhus has hit downtown Los Angeles, the county Department of Public Health said Thursday.

Health officials say they are investigating several cases of flea-borne typhus, a disease that infected fleas can spread to humans. While the fleas can come from cats, rats, and opossums, pets and animals do not get sick from typhus.

In people, however, typhus can cause high fever, chills, headache, and rash. It is not transmitted from person to person and can be treated with antibiotics.

“Although typhus normally occurs throughout L.A. County, we are observing several cases in the downtown Los Angeles area,” Los Angeles County Health Officer Muntu Davis said in a statement. “We encourage pet owners to practice safe flea control and encourage all cities in the county to ensure maintenance of their trash clean-up and rodent control activities.”

Typhus can spread in areas where there is an accumulation of trash that attracts wild animals like feral cats, rats and opossums.

To help prevent typhus, the department recommended that residents:
— Practice safe flea control.
— Use flea control products on pets.
— When outside, wear pants tucked into socks or boots when outside. Spray insect repellent with DEET on socks and pant cuffs.
— Avoid being near wild or stray animals.
— Never feed or touch wild animals, especially opossums, rats and stray or feral cats.
— Store trash in cans with secure lids to avoid attracting animals.
— Clear areas where rats and stray animals sleep, hide or find food, such as crawl spaces, attics or under decks, and wear gloves and a mask when clearing these areas.

(© Copyright 2018 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. City News Service contributed to this report.)

Comments (130)
  1. There hasn’t been a Los Angeles County Public Health Report on the conditions in Skid Row since 2013. Maybe there should be. @cbsrachel

  2. Jorge Gonzalez says:

    “Although typhus normally occurs throughout L.A. County”
    Sums up the entire liberal population of California. Nasty diseases occur so often, they become normal.

  3. Mike Snyder says:

    Dr. Drew called this!!!! Many many months ago.

    1. Donald Maginnis says:

      I heard the exact same show. Inevitable with the way they handle the homeless situation.

  4. Kevin Provance says:

    Good. I hope it wipes out the majority of you intolerant leftists and your illegals. The sooner Cali drops into the sea from the big one, the better.

  5. Rocco Henderson says:

    ….now buzzing around a homeless derelict near you…

  6. James Harvey says:

    Welp, time to break out the ZyklonB

    1. Eric Thatcher says:

      I see what you’re saying.

  7. Ryan Waggoner says:

    “We encourage pet owners to practice safe flea control…”

    Downtown LA? Something tells me it isn’t pet owners who need to worry.

  8. Joe Garcia says:

    Third world people, third world problems.

  9. Ken Simmons says:

    No surprise, considering all the primitive “refugees and such” that LA, etc. allows to freely (and illegally) enter via the Southern Border.

    I have no sympathy at all – let the DEMO(C)RATS who control the area deal with it…

  10. Hopefully it will spread throughout Hollywood. Harvey Weinstein and his kind could afford to lose some weight. Good luck typhus!

  11. Dusty Granger says:

    When you keep bringing Third Worlders into America….America eventually becomes the Third World….along with all their diseases.

  12. Nicholas Pascal says:

    Ianother flea-borne disease bubonic plague.Eveyone gets a flea collar

    1. Samuel Green says:

      My home sits in a oak sanctuary and big peanut filled birdfeeders also attract lots of racoons and such. I have two indoor cats that have a screened in 77′ lanai.

      For YEARS fleas vexed me at every turn, no matter how much diatomaceous earth was used, no matter what expensive flea meds my cats took, or how many times I used my Dyson to vacuum them, fleas persisted.

      One day I put up a 16″ wire fence and a secondary 12″ plastic fence just to keep racoons from going nose to nose with my two rescue cats. That stupid double fence nuked my flea issue 100%. So no Typhus for me.

      A long time ago I bought a really nice microscope with Zeiss optics, and I made the mistake of looking at a flea. Little, ugly, jumping, armored vampires.

  13. Vernon Welles says:

    When you live in filth, diseases follow. Fleas carried on rats that then jumped to humans spread the Black Plague. You can expect more virulent forms of disease spreading in other urban areas where large numbers of non-vaccinated people unused to proper hygiene and sanitation methods congregate. This outbreak is a harbinger of more serious outbreaks of disease to come, so avoid cities if you can.

  14. Grizz Mann says:

    Any dreamers in the area?

  15. Bill Numeyer says:

    It’s the honeless bums. The trash, the peeing in the streets. All brought to you by liberal democrat policy.

  16. where is the verse in the “California Dreamin” song talks about Flea-Borne Typhus?

  17. rytwinger says:

    Sanctuary! Sanctuary!

  18. Gary O'Neal says:

    Lay down with dogs, get up with fleas. LA is the dogs you shouldn’t be laying with.

  19. Bobby Cullari says:

    Wow, so unexpected….said nobody…lol
    When you herd that many losers into one area, the flees come too.

  20. Stehr Va says:

    Its funny how all this horrible stuff keeps happening to liberals and their states and yet they still don’t get that they are being punished for their stupidity.

  21. Flea-Borne Typhus? Isn’t that the name of a rapper? Word.

  22. Why the surprise, California? You eagerly imported this crop. Las Pulgas! Se se puede. Now curl up in that bed you made and enjoy. And it’s just the beginning.

  23. Robert Quinn says:

    Goooo Typhus !!!


    Everybody says there is this RACE problem. Everybody says this RACE problem will be solved when the third world pours into EVERY white country and ONLY into white countries.

    The Netherlands and Belgium are just as crowded as Japan or Taiwan, but nobody says Japan or Taiwan will solve this RACE problem by bringing in millions of third worlders and quote assimilating unquote with them.

    Everybody says the final solution to this RACE problem is for EVERY white country and ONLY white countries to “assimilate,” i.e., intermarry, with all those non-whites.

    What if I said there was this RACE problem and this RACE problem would be solved only if hundreds of millions of non-blacks were brought into EVERY black country and ONLY into black countries?

    How long would it take anyone to realize I’m not talking about a RACE problem. I am talking about the final solution to the BLACK problem?

    And how long would it take any sane black man to notice this and what kind of psycho black man wouldn’t object to this?

    But if I tell that obvious truth about the ongoing program of genocide against my race, the white race, Liberals and respectable conservatives agree that I am a naziwhowantstokillsixmillionjews.

    They say they are anti-racist. What they are is anti-white.

    Anti-racist is a code word for anti-white.

  25. Another case of liberals reaping what they sow. Make sure you stay put and don’t spread your dirt to the rest of the country.

  26. Tara Terminiello says:

    We were in LA last March and flabbergasted by the extant of the homeless camps that stretched block after block after block…some white, but mostly black and latino.Mostly men.Garbage, piles of refuse, litter, open food cooking, wandering animals , mess mess mess.I was surprised at the amount of upscale camping equipment I saw and was informed its donated by the city to help the homelss out… but no one addressess the dangers and illogic of allowing people to live like this.Last spring it was hepatitus attacking the area and they had to spray the streets down with chlorox.

    They need to deport the deportable ones, and the rest need to be sent to workhouses, albeit benevolent ones, that provide food and shelter for an honest days training and work.If they dont/wont submit to training and counseling, out they go.

  27. Hepatitis, plague and tuberculosis will soon follow. All of the major cities in California are at risk due to their tolerance of intravenous drug use, illegal aliens, and homeless camps with no sanitation or running water.

  28. PS Galvanek says:

    YAY Open borders!

    I keep wondering when the average Democrat voter is going to wake up and realize that George Soros and his pals are deliberately trying to kill as many as them off with a some epidemic as possible. Measles outbreak in the southwest, planes returning from Mecca being quarantined, resurgence of antibiotic resistant TB … now typhus.

    Guess it’s going to take a few hundred thousand death to get their attention.

  29. Cletus McFarland says:

    Big deal. Third world countries have the same issues as California does.

  30. Carl Hunt says:

    Have to love those liberal sanctuary cities.

  31. You welcome flea bitten dogs into your state across an open border this is what you get! Whats the old proverb? “You sleep with dogs you get fleas” Just be glade its just Typhus you California Loons!!

  32. I know it not politically correct to point fingers but, this should not be a surprise. Wonder if the health department has inspected downtown LA where the homeless live on the street, defecate and eat garbage out of dumpsters? Could this be the heart of the problem, if so maybe it time to clean up the area?

  33. Jeff Jones says:

    What a stupid ignorant article. Blaming taxpaying citizens and their pets for this outbreak is mind-blowing Marxist propaganda. Have you been to down-town LA recently? The sidewalks and even freeway onramps are lined with degenerate tent cities, right up to the civic center. The filth is tangible, wouldn’t try walking down a sidewalk there. The amazing thing is there isn’t more disease and pestilence oozing from that slum hole.

  34. Pete Wagner says:

    Germany had to fight it while being bombed to hell. LA should have an easier time with it.

  35. Tom Genin says:

    A good idea would be to bring in more illegals of unknown, untreated illnesses without vaccinations so they can live on the streets so they have as much contact with everyone else to help spread everything as fast as possible.

  36. Nan Allen says:

    Thanks again, California!

  37. That whole liberal nirvana thing, you sho do be rockin it. Think I’ll stay in my red state, thanks.

  38. Let them all in, with no health screening at all. Working out great eh?

  39. David Foster says:

    You made your bed Cali, now sleep in it with your fleas!

  40. George Rickle says:

    Why is this surprising ? Many diseases long not found in America is brought here by illegals. I recall an incident when my kids were going to school in TEXAS . Needed a check for tuberculosis. I asked why ? Was told because it is brought by illegals .

  41. Mark Desser says:

    Typhus is a bad killer.

  42. Sandy Johnson says:

    Eric Garcetti brought the fleas in when he got elected.

  43. Michael Hansen says:

    Why is this news? The place has been full of parasites for decades.

  44. Jay Savary says:

    Not a surprise. Chagas, typhoid, TB, measles, they are all on the rebound. What a country gets from unscreened immigration, people knew this 100 years ago. There’s even 1600+ cases of leprosy in the US. Sleep well lefties.

  45. Welcome to 3rd world California. You brung it on yourselves.

  46. Dan Brower says:

    Well, Shazzzzaamm!!! Who would have thought the homeless and the drug using community would be dirty, filthy, bug infested, and carry diseases?

  47. Gary Griffin says:

    No habla ingles.

  48. Donny Dingle says:

    Can Typhus infect Conservatives as well as Liberals? O just west coast Liberals?

  49. LA – The Mayor should be fired. All the sickness, disease is coming in from Mexico to a neighborhood near you! California gets what it deserves voting for these pitiful excuses for leadership.

  50. Harve Morgan says:

    Feral cat colonies. And Breeder Barnette wants to spend $800,000 to continue these colonies. Next thing she’ll try to do is convince us we need ‘community dogs’, free roaming dogs. It’s time to take issue with the the TNR movement and how it allows disease to spread. Not even to mention that TNR is the ultimate cruelty to cats.

    1. Elena George says:

      Not really. Paris in the Middle Ages decoded to kill all its feral cats which to that point had controlled the rat and other rodent populations. The result was the plague. Cats keep rodents and snakes in check. Call them “working cats” if you like. They are perfectly at home in the outdoors.

      TNR is very effective at controlling the expansion of feral cat colonies. It stops the rampant breeding. It also improves the overall health of the cats in the colonies. Without TNR, you end up with the mass killing of ferals and the vacuum effect where that colony had been. The empty spot makes a place for a new colony to set up shop.

      https://www.alleycat.org/ to get the facts about Trap Neuter Return (TNR) and its positive effect on the lives of the humans and the cats in a neighborhood.

      Cats are the one pet who can live just fine outside without human intervention.

  51. Scotty Gunn says:

    You all can thank a democrat for this.

  52. Strange. There was no problem before California opened its arms to illegals.

  53. Thomas Lawrence says:

    You listed a lot of vectors, but left out the most prevalent, demonicRATS

  54. Shocking, coming soon to other Democrat Communist cities.


    1. Andrew Clayterman says:

      It comes from homeless, mexicants and other illegals! I’ll meet you at Home Depot..

  56. Alben Parkley says:

    Wait ’til rat-borne Hantavirus arrives………………….but then it’ll be too late!

  57. Jakob Stagg says:

    What’s next in Looney Land? The Black Plague?

  58. Hugh Glass says:

    Something serious I hope.

  59. Richard A Hooks says:

    Thanks dims we will never become a third world %@&^ (^%$ country without you.

  60. You make your bed with the homeless and illegals and you are bound to pick up more than fleas.

  61. Handy Andy says:

    Thanks Mayor Eric Garcetti. I guess you can add this to your list of accomplishments when you run for president in 2020.

  62. Martin Deano says:

    Maybe the wall should be built around L.A.

  63. wimvincken says:

    With the corruption and decay going on there in such cities of the left, it’s only to be expected such things to be popping up and for sure it gets worse.

  64. On the bright side, at least LA has that whole straw and plastic bag thing nailed down tight.

  65. Elena George says:

    Lay down with dogs, get up with fleas. Lay down with Dems, get up with typhus.

  66. Al Zabel says:

    I wonder how long it will take, to spread to Hollywood and Beverly Hills? Can’t wait.
    Perhaps, instead of taking in illegals? They should take in the homeless.

  67. Plarp Zootie says:

    Second world America is having third world problems.

  68. Lynn Wood says:

    This is of great concern. Typhus destroyed the Imperial Russian Armies in the First World War and resulted in untold misery for millions because the men of prime age were not present to work the land.
    Typhus killed millions in war torn China in the Second World War.

    This is a damning verdict of how low we have fallen. But there is hope, Silicon Valley is no doubt working on an app so you can tell if a flea is infected, and the debate about the bounds of government intrusion into our freedom of choice to be infected or not, or as to why those not infected should have to pay, and whether this should be an allowed charge for medical insurance purposes, surely is resolving into a resolution of determined action implementation depicted in bullet point format.

  69. You lay down with dogs (accept the drug using homeless), you will get up with fleas, diseases, and typhus.

  70. magic1114 says:

    Messyco’s way of thanking L.A. for taking in the people they don’t want…

  71. Asian countries for Asians.

    Black countries for Blacks.

    but White countries for everybody?

    That’s genocide.

    Anti-racist is a codeword for Anti-White

  72. Robert Manning says:

    Get ready for a huge Earthquake
    This was previously recorded before a huge Earthquake before
    The vibrations in the ground are bringing these critters to the surface.
    You should see more rats before long.
    Get ready California..the big one is coming

  73. Epidemic Typhus is spread by body lice according to Wikipedia. So treating your pets for fleas won’t protect you.