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What are disease signs to look for in deer?
Chronic wasting disease-affected deer and elk show loss of body condition and
changes in behavior. The clinical disease is often more subtle and prolonged in
elk than in deer. Affected animals may walk repetitive courses; they may show
subtle ataxia and wide based stance; subtle head tremors occur in some animals;
they may be found near water sources or in riparian areas; they may have periods
of somnolence; and they may carry their head and ears lowered. Chronic wasting
disease affected animals continue to eat but amounts of feed consumed are
reduced, leading to gradual loss of body condition. Excessive drinking and
urination are common in the terminal stages because of specific lesions in the
brain. Many animals in terminal stages of CWD have excessive salivation and
drooling; this may result in wetting of the hairs of the chin and neck. Death is
inevitable once clinical disease occurs.