Department of Health & Human Services

Posted on: August 5, 2016

Orleans area fox tests positive for rabies

The Department of Health & Human Services (DHHS) Public Health Laboratory confirmed that a fox from the Orleans area has tested positive for rabies. Testing was conducted following an incident that involved human exposure, with one person now receiving prophylactic treatment.

DHHS advises anyone who has had contact with the Orleans fox population in the past 30 days to call the Public Health Clinic at 707-268-2182.

Rabies is always present in the wildlife population throughout Humboldt County, especially among skunks, bats and foxes. In July, a Humboldt County dog tested positive for rabies, the first such case in five years.

Preventive measures include avoiding contact with wild and stray animals, bringing pet foods indoors at night, reporting animal bites to your county or municipal animal control officer, and if you are bitten, washing the bite immediately with soap and water and seeking medical attention.

Public Health officials stress the importance of fully vaccinating domestic animals against rabies, including dogs, cats and select livestock.

For questions about rabies or to report a rabid animal, please call the DHHS Division of Environmental Health at 707-445-6215 or toll free at 1-800-963-9241.

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