Squirrels can infect humans with a variety of diseases. Some of these diseases are tularemia, typhus, and plague.
Tularemia is a disease that is particularly transmitted from rodents such as squirrels. This disease can be transmitted from dust and particles contaminated with the F. tularensis bacteria. This disease is rather rare and is often confused for more common illnesses due to it’s flu like symptoms. This disease’s symptoms vary based on transmission but in short it can cause: eye irritation, ulcers in skin, sore throat, swollen lymph nodes, and pneumonia.
Typhus is transmitted by infected lice that are particularly fond of flying squirrels and is the primary reason why flying squirrel infestation is extremely serious. This disease gives you flu like symptoms as well as aches, rapid breathing, nausea, and confusion. A vast majority of the cases of typhus in the United States is from flying squirrels, please contact a wildlife professional if you believe you have flying squirrels in your house.
Plague is shorthand for Bubonic, septicemic, and pneumonic plague. The plague is spread by fleas which can be found on the squirrels. The bubonic plague is what squirrels primarily carry which can give fever, headache, chills, and weakness and one or more swollen, painful lymph nodes. If you do not get treatment once symptoms begin to show, it will spread to other parts of the body.