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Today, the Humboldt County Department of Health & Human Services (DHHS) Public Health Laboratory confirmed that a cat in Orleans tested positive for rabies. A fox from the Orleans area also tested positive for rabies last month.
DHHS reminds everyone that rabies is always present in the wildlife population throughout Humboldt County, especially among skunks, bats and foxes. In more rural areas like Orleans, domestic animals like cats and dogs are at great risk of contracting rabies if they have not been adequately vaccinated.
As we go into our three-day weekend many of us will be enjoying outdoor activities. Remember to avoid contact with any animal that does not appear to be acting normally. Do not approach wild or stray animals, even if they appear tame. If you are bitten, wash the bite immediately with soap and water and seek medical attention. Report animal bites to your health care provider or Public Health at 707-268-2182.
Public Health would also be interested in hearing from anyone in the Orleans area about cats or dogs showing evidence of what could be symptoms of rabies, such as seizures, unstable gait or abnormal behavior.
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.-###-
Follow us on Twitter: @HumCoDHHS and Facebook: www.facebook.com/humcodhhs.