The Champaign Health District would like to remind our residents to vaccinate their pets against the rabies virus. The health district staff has investigated fifty-one animal bites in 2012; of these bites four animals have been tested for rabies. This past week a bat tested positive for rabies; the person that was bitten is now undergoing treatment a four shot regimen with the rabies vaccine.
The best thing you can do to prevent an exposure to rabies is to avoid contact with wild animals, sick or injured animals, and animals you don’t know. Pet vaccinations should be kept current, and pets should not be permitted to roam. Some wild animals are cute when they are babies and families may think they can keep a baby as a pet, unfortunately these babies grow up and don’t always remember that the family is a “friend”.
The primary carrier of rabies in Ohio is a raccoon or bat; there have been thirty confirmed cases of rabies in Ohio this year. Keeping in mind that the only animals tested are those involved in a bite there are probably many more positive animals in Ohio. Rabid raccoons are primarily found in the northwestern part of Ohio, but bats are found across the state.
Please help the Champaign Health District staff keep you and your loved ones safe, vaccinate your pets and teach your children not to approach animals they don’t know! Remember, most wild animals will flee from you, so if an animal is lurking near your residence it is quite possibly sick. Report all animal bites to the health district so that an investigation can begin immediately and it can be determined quickly whether medication is needed to save a life.
The Champaign Health District is partnering with the Clark County Combined Health District to provide rabies vaccination for animals at a minimal cost of $10.00 cash per animal on September 4, 2012 from 4:00 until 7:00 PM at the offices of the Clark County Combined Health District 529 East Home Road Springfield. More information about rabies and other diseases can be found at www.odh.ohio.gov and more information about the rabies vaccination clinic can be found at http://www.ccchd.com.