Onondaga County Interim Commissioner of Health, Michelle Mignano, announced today that the New York State Health Department laboratory has reported a fox found in the town of Onondaga has tested positive for rabies. Local residents were exposed to the rabies virus. Ms. Mignano stresses, “It is important to enjoy wildlife from a distance. Over 90 percent of rabies cases are from wild animals. It is important to take steps to minimize your exposure”.
Rabies prevention steps:
Teach children to stay away from unfamiliar animals, either wild or domestic, even if they appear friendly.
Wash any wound from an animal thoroughly with soap and water and seek immediate medical attention.
See your doctor for attention for any trauma due to an animal attack.
If you come into contact with an animal exhibiting signs of rabies such as unusual behavior, change in the voice of the animal, signs of paralysis (weakness), a hard time swallowing, and a lot of salivation, acting lethargic (very weak), may have convulsions, and/or may die. Contact Animal Disease Prevention at 435-3165.
Keep your pet’s vaccinations current. This is especially important for your pet dogs, cats, and ferrets. New York State Public Health Law requires that all puppies and kittens get an initial shot at three months of age, with a booster shot every three years. Getting your pet regularly vaccinated can help stop the spread of rabies from wild animals to humans.
The Onondaga County Health Department offers several rabies clinics throughout the year to vaccinate your pet. For more information about the rabies shot clinics visit www.ongov.net/health or call