Original Publication Date: 16 April 2007
The recent death of a Squirrel has alerted The Park’s medical community to the necessity of implementing measures to deal with the possible onset of a panzootic, according to a spokesAnimal for The Park’s Department of Well-Being and Safety (DWBS).
Kostas Apollonios Eusebios Squirrel died on 26 March as a result of Small Ball Fever, six days after he had extensive contact with a small ball which he imported to The Park from a local field.
An internal memo from the DWBS, made available to this newspaper, reveals that the likelihood of a small ball fever panzootic is greater this year than in previous years, in large part because of the proliferation of small balls in the communities surrounding The Park.
Every year, the DWBS monitors the influx of small balls. This year, the number has increased tenfold. Experts say this is due, primarily, to the early onset of warm, sunny weather.
“Small balls are the bane of our existence,” said Cornelius Kakapo, Director of Public Relations for the DWBS. “We can contain them inside The Park, but there is nothing we can do to restrict their number outside our borders,” he said.
Small balls were first sighted in The Park more than a decade ago, but their number has grown exponentially over the past five years. The balls, which are better known outside The Park as “golf” balls, harbour the deadly Small Ball Fever virus inside their dimpled surface. The SBF virus is spread when it leaks through cracks in the ball’s surface and makes contact with mucosa in the mouth or nose. Symptoms include extremely high fever, chills, aching muscles, and, eventually, pulmonary dysfunction. All Animals are at risk of developing Small Ball Fever but some groups of Animals, including Squirrels, Donkeys, the elderly, and the infirm, are at particular risk.
The DWBS’s Kakapo was quick to assure Animals that the Department is doing everything in its power to limit the spread of Small Ball Fever and to protect The Park’s population from a panzootic.
For more information, please consult The Park’s Department of Well-Being and Safety pamphlet, “What you should know about Small Ball Fever.”