Multiple rabid animals found in Oneida County this week; health department advises caution | Local

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The Oneida County Health Department is urging residents to be cautious after multiple people were exposed to rabid animals over this past week.

Earlier in the week, two people were exposed to a fox in Utica and one person to a bat in the town of Vienna. Both the fox and the bat tested positive for rabies.

Then on Wednesday, two people in Camden were exposed to another fox that the health department says was likely rabid. The fox was sent to the lab to be tested and official results are pending.

The health department says all those exposed to the rabid animals received post-exposure prophylaxis.

Residents are advised to stay away from animals that are acting unusual, getting too close or acting tamer than expected. Trouble moving, drooling or foaming at the mouth are signs of rabies infection in most animals. Bats may also be rabid if they are on the ground.

According to the health department, most bats are not rabid, but 7 out of 10 Americans who die from rabies were infected by a bat.

Pet owners should also make sure their animals’ rabies vaccines are up to date. The health department is holding its next rabies vaccination clinic at the Vienna Town Garage on July 26. To schedule an appointment call 315-798-5064.

“Prevention efforts are the most important, easiest way to protect ourselves from rabies,” said Dr. Daniel W. Gilmore, director of health. “However, if you do become exposed, seek care quickly. Treatment is available but time sensitive.”

If you see a rabid animal call your local animal control office. If you encounter or are bitten by an animal you believe is rabid, seek treatment immediately.

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