An Unknown Disease Is Giving Bears Dog-Like Friendliness – And It’s Dangerous, Not Cute

California black bears have contracted a mysterious brain disease that treats them in a friendly and fearless manner.

As neurological disease progresses, it is associated with lethargy, a dramatic weight loss, a distinct head tilt, tremors, and an abnormal grazing. If left untreated, the disease can be fatal. The California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW) documented the first few cases back in 2014, when several young black bears in the Tahoe Basin warned with obvious nervous abnormalities. Several similar cases have since spread to the California counter.

A report by Pollock Pine in El Dorado County last month seems to have described the situation quite well. A small black bear spotted alone in a utility worksheet. In addition to appearing lazy and possibly ill, people almost completely noticed the animal trying to move away with clapping and screaming. Eventually, CDFW received another call about a similar report in their backyard. 

The CDFW said in a statement, “When CDFW wildlife experts and wardens went to investigate; they found a situation more common in the Tahoe Basin and elsewhere across the state. They saw a bear go out on its own, behaving “like a dog”, picking up an apple to eat in front of them in the backyard patio, perfectly comfortable around people. Physically and mentally, the bear did not feel right, should not move strangely, be dull and not react like a bear.”  The black bear taken by veterinarians for observation and evaluation, which revealed that, it was underweight and severely underweight. A week later, they forced to euthanize the bear.

Scientists are the cause of abnormal diseases. Early post-mortem results and CT scans of infected bears indicate that they are suffering from encephalitis, an inflammation of the brain tissues usually caused by infectious agents such as viruses, fungi or bacteria. CDFW wildlife experts say the root cause of the disease is still unknown, but they have found some alarming signs that five of the bears have never seen the presence of viruses before. Researchers in CLFW and the Davis Journal of the University of California discovered that the novel viruses belong to five genres:  Circoviridae, Parvoviridae, Anelloviridae, Polyomaviridae, and Papillomaviridae. It further noted that the brothers identified in bears liver, spleen and – critically – brain tissue.