A raccoon in the Town of Middletown has tested positive for rabies. One person was bitten by the rabid raccoon and has begun Rabies Post-Exposure Prophylaxis(PEP).  Some animals may not show any signs of having rabies. It’s important to leave wild animals alone, including baby animals, especially if it is acting strangely.

Rabies is endemic to the area. An exposure to rabies can be fatal for a human or a pet. Raccoons—along with foxes (red and gray), skunks, and bats—are considered a primary carrier of the rabies virus in the United States. While any warm-blooded animal can carry rabies, these are the ones we call “rabies vector species.”Once infected, rabies is a virus that has a 100% fatality rate for mammals, including humans, when left untreated.  Public Health recommends the following precautions to protect yourself and your family from possible exposure to rabies:

Report any sick or strange acting wildlifeVaccinate pets and livestock. New York State law requires that all dogs, cats and ferrets be vaccinated against rabies by 4 months of age. Vaccinating your domestic animal not only provides protection for the animal, but vaccinated pets act as a barrier to keep the rabies virus from spreading between wild animals and people.Vaccination is also recommended for livestock with frequent human contact.Do not feed wildlife or stray animals and discourage them from seeking food near your home.Do not feed strays.

For more details contact the Delaware County Public Health Department by CLICKING HERE.