Officials put out rabies warning - WALB.com, South Georgia News, Weather, Sports

Officials put out rabies warning

Environmental Specialist  James Davis Environmental Specialist James Davis
ALBANY, GA (WALB) -

Spring time is underway and with it comes a warning from district public health - vaccinate your pets for rabies. This comes after a dog and cat in one South Georgia County already tested positive for rabies.

And while the days are longer and more people are outdoors.It's also important to protect yourself.

At least 2 south Georgians were attacked last year by wild animals that tested positive for rabies. And while wild animal attacks are relatively rare on humans, that number increases for our outdoor pets.

"chances are they have come into contact with a wild animal at some point in time, so that's why it's important to get your animals vaccinated," said Environmental Specialist  James Davis.

Southwest District Public health officials say already this year a dog and cat have tested positive for rabies in Schley County along with at least 3 other wild animals in the 14 county district. And as the months get warmer...that number will rise.

"The animals are more active. People are more active. You tend to come into contact more because everybody is out and about," Davis said.

With an abundance of feral cats in Albany-Dougherty County, a warning to those who feed them.

"Not only can they have had contact with a rabid animal because they're not vaccinated, but feral cats tend to attract foxes. They're prey for foxes´ Davis said.

 While rabies cases are high in varmints like raccoons and foxes. The bat is one creature that can carry it and pass it without you even knowing you were attacked.

"Occasionally in situations where there's a bat in the room. We recommend you trap that animal or call us and we'll trap it so we can test it for rabies.

So look out for bats. And if you haven't already, get your pet vaccinated. It will give your peace of mind when they're out in the great outdoors.

Currently in our area district public health in Albany does testing for rabies in animals, but beginning June first that operation will shut down here and testing will be performed in Waycross.

Copyright 2013 WALB.  All rights reserved.

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