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Raccoon Captured in Northeast Forsyth Tests Positive for Rabies

A raccoon in the area of Crooked O Trail (Gainesville) has tested positive for Rabies following capture on February 21.

“The resident that reported the rabid animal did a great job of calling Animal Services to report the possibly rabid raccoon,” said Forsyth County Animal Services Supervisor Haley Brown. “The prompt report of the animal allowed for Animal Services to respond quickly and capture it for testing.”

While there is no reported human exposure to the animal, public health officials will notify any individuals who have been exposed to risks and will inform them of the need to seek medical care, if necessary.

To report a wild animal acting strangely, avoid the animal and contact Forsyth County Animal Services at  770-781-2138. If it is after business hours, contact the Forsyth County 911 Center after-hours line at 770-781-3087. To report an animal bite, immediately call the Georgia Poison Control Center helpline at 1-800-222-1222 for medical instructions.

The Rabies Virus can be transmitted to domestic animals and humans only when the virus is introduced into bite wounds, open cuts in the skin, or onto mucous membranes, such as the eyes or mouth. Rabies is a viral infection transmitted in the saliva of infected mammals and enters the central nervous system of the host causing an inflammation of the brain that is almost always fatal. Wildlife remains the most likely potential source of infection for both humans and domestic animals in the United States since the most common carriers of Rabies are raccoons, skunks, coyotes, foxes and bats. For more information pertaining to the Rabies Virus, visit Forsyth County Animal Services online.

“Encounters between wild animals and domestic pets, including some that involved people, have increased recently, so we encourage all residents to have their pets vaccinated against the Rabies Virus and be educated on what to do if they encounter a potentially rabid animal.”

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