Showing posts with label Animals Rabies. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Animals Rabies. Show all posts

Monday, May 23, 2016

The Carroll County Health Department is alerting area citizens about a cat that recently tested positive for #rabies.

by Jon Kelvey for the Carroll County Times

The Carroll County Health Department is alerting area citizens about a cat that recently tested positive for rabies.

Mon. May 23, 2016 - Notice: The Carroll County Health Department is alerting area citizens about a cat that recently tested positive for rabies.

It was an older gray domestic short-hair kitten (approximately 9 months old) that may have roamed on and around the area of West Main Street that runs behind the Safeway, on the other side of Route 31 in Westminster (near Baugher’s Restaurant.)

Rabies is spread through saliva of an infected animal, usually by bite, but also through a scratch or open wound.

If you think you may have had contact with the cat in the ways described above, please contact the Health Department at (410) 876-4771, (410) 876-4936, or (410) 876-4882.


For more information about rabies, go to the section on rabies on the Carroll County Health Department’s website here:

The Bureau of Environmental Health is charged with minimizing the effects of rabies on Carroll County's citizens. This is accomplished in cooperation with the Department's Nursing Bureau, local law enforcement, the County Humane Society, and other State and local agencies. The Bureau is responsible for investigation of animal bites, managing quarantines, conducting vaccination clinics for dogs, cats and ferrets, and determining when animals must be euthanized and /or submitted for laboratory testing.

Rabies Facts

Rabies is a deadly disease caused by a virus. It kills almost any mammal or human that gets sick from it.

The rabies virus lives in the saliva of rabid animals. It can be transmitted through a bite or scratch or by a lick in a wound or in the eye or mouth.

Only mammals get rabies. Birds, insects, fish, turtles, reptiles, and amphibians do not. Skunks, bats, foxes, raccoons, dogs, cats, ferrets, and some farm animals are most likely to get rabies. Rabbits, opossums, squirrels, rats, and mice seldom get it.

Rabies can be prevented in cats, dogs, ferrets, horses, cows, sheep, and goats with a rabies vaccination. There is no accepted rabies vaccination for wild animals.

Those most likely to be exposed are cats and dogs kept outside and allowed to roam; farm animals; humans who trap, hike, and camp.

What You Can Do To Prevent and Control Rabies

Cats, dogs, ferrets, and selected livestock need up-to-date rabies vaccination. Puppies and kittens vaccinated between the ages of 3-12 months, and dogs and cats receiving their first vaccination, must be revaccinated 12 months later. Re-vaccination should be every 1 to 3 years, depending on the type of vaccine used. It will not harm your pet to have it vaccinated every year if you wish.

The Bureau of Environmental Health offers at-cost anti-rabies vaccination clinics for animals each year.  Contact our office for dates and times.

If your vaccinated pet is attacked or bitten by a rabid animal, be sure to have it revaccinated with a booster. If your pet is not vaccinated, it may have to be destroyed or kept in strict isolation for six months.

Pets should be kept in the home or yard and, if off your property, walked on a leash. Pets running at large are more likely to be exposed to rabies.

Enjoy wild animals from a distance. Wild animals should not be kept as pets. They are a potential rabies threat to their owners and others. Even a baby skunk or raccoon, born in captivity, can be a rabies carrier.

Avoid strange animals even if they appear friendly. Do not try to coax wild animals to eat from your hand. Never approach or touch wild animals or pets you do not own.

Children should be told to immediately report any bite, scratch, or contact with a strange or wild animal.

Make your house and yard unattractive to wild animals. Feed pets inside the house. Keep garbage in tightly closed trash cans and do not set trash out the night before it is to be collected. Cap chimneys. Seal off any openings in the attic, under porches, and in basements and outbuildings.

Some Common Questions About Rabies

How can people get rabies?

Since rabies lives in rabid animals' saliva, a bite is the most common way it is transmitted. Scratches which have allowed saliva into the body or saliva that has gotten into open wounds, eyes, nose, or mouth can also be a problem. Just petting or touching a rabid animal or pet which has had contact with a rabid animal, or being in an area where rabid animals have been does not result in a rabies exposure.

What should I do if I think my dog, cat, ferret, or farm animal has rabies?

Consult a veterinarian and report to the local law enforcement agency if any person has been bitten or exposed to the suspect animal. Be sure to keep the animal confined until it can be examined by a veterinarian. Try not to expose yourself or other people to the animal.

What should I do if I see a stray or wild animal that I think may have rabies?

Do not feed or handle it. Keep your own animals from coming in contact with it. Capture the animal, if possible, without risking exposure. For example, if the raccoon is in a garage, close all doors and windows. Then call your local animal control agency for further instructions.

What should I do if I find a dead animal on my property?

If there has been human or animal exposure, contact your local health department for instructions. If there has been no human or animal exposure, the animal may be buried. If it is necessary to touch the animal, gloves should be worn. An easy way to handle the animal is to stick your hand into a garbage bag, grab the animal by a leg through the garbage bag, then pull the bag over the animal, and tie it shut. Then, bury the animal, preferably three feet deep, or dispose of it through the local animal control agency. Do not throw it out along a road, or in a wooded area or field.

What should I do if my dog, cat, ferret, or farm animal has been exposed to a wild animal that I think may have rabies?

Do not handle, pet, touch, or examine your animal for at least 2 hours. The wild animal should be captured or killed, being careful not to damage the head, and submitted for rabies testing through the local health department. In doing this, you should be careful not to get bitten or exposed to the wild animal. Assistance may be available through your local animal control agency.

What will be done with the animal that bit (or exposed) me to find out if it has rabies?

If it is a dog, cat, ferret, or farm animal, it will be quarantined for 10 days, to find out if it had rabies at the time it bit you. If it is a wild animal, it will probably have to be destroyed and the head submitted for testing to the laboratory.
Should I get vaccinated against rabies?

Generally speaking no. The pre-exposure vaccination is only recommended for certain high-risk groups. These are people who regularly handle animals and, therefore, may be at high risk of exposure to rabies. High-risk groups include veterinarians, animal control workers, trappers and raccoon hunters.

What You Need To Do If A Bite Occurs

Try to capture the animal or, if the animal is wild, try to kill it. Try not to damage the animal's head.

Immediately wash the wound with plenty of soap and water, scrubbing the bitten area gently. Dry the wound.

If the animal is a pet dog or cat, obtain the pet owner's name, address, and telephone number. Find out if the animal has a current rabies shot (immunization) and write down the rabies tag number.

Get prompt medical attention, if necessary. Go to your family doctor or nearest emergency room.

Report the incident to the police. If your pet dog or cat is involved in a fight with a wild animal:

Do not handle your pet for two hours after the fight. This will give any infected saliva time to dry, killing the virus.

If your immunized pet dog or cat has been bitten, they will need another rabies vaccination. The animal will also have to be kept on a leash or caged for 45 days.

If your pet is not currently vaccinated, it will have to be placed in strict isolation for six months or humanely euthanized.

What You Need To Know About Rabies Treatment

Once the signs of rabies appear, the disease almost always causes death. If caught in time, it can be prevented. After a person is bitten by an animal proven to have rabies, a doctor must be contacted immediately and anti-rabies treatment begun.

The treatment consists of five doses of vaccine given over a one-month period, plus antiserum given at the beginning. None of the injections are given in the stomach area. This treatment has been very successful.

No one who has received proper treatment has died from rabies.

Vaccination against rabies before exposure is not recommended for the general public. Only those individuals who are regularly at risk for rabies exposure should get this vaccine (for example, veterinarians, and animal control workers).

For more information about rabies, go to the section on rabies on the Carroll County Health Department’s website here:

In other Carroll County Health Department News