Officials confirm fourth, fifth cases of rabies in Catawba Co. in 2019

Officials confirm fourth, fifth cases of rabies in Catawba Co. in 2019
Officials have confirmed the fourth and fifth cases of rabies in Catawba County in 2019.

NEWTON, N.C. (WBTV) - Officials have confirmed the fourth and fifth cases of rabies in Catawba County in 2019.

According to the Catawba County Animal Services, officials responded to a call in Maiden concerning two dogs exposed to a skunk on Wednesday.

The skunk was sent to the North Carolina Public Health Laboratory in Raleigh, which notified officials Friday that the skunk tested positive for rabies.

Because both dogs were current on their rabies vaccinations, Animal Services advised their owner to ensure they received booster vaccines following the incident.

Per state vaccination guidelines, animals current on their rabies vaccination should receive a rabies booster within 96 hours of possible rabies exposure.

On June 11, rabies was confirmed in a feral cat in Hickory.

“Signs that an animal may be infected with rabies include loss of appetite, irritability and unusual aggression, lack of fear and restlessness, dilated pupils, seizures, trembling and unsteadiness, difficulty swallowing, and drooling or foaming at the mouth,” an email read.

Officials advise people who encounter an animal with any of these symptoms should avoid contact with the animal and report it to Catawba County Animal Services at (828) 464-7686.

Pet owners who suspect their pet had contact with a rabid animal are also urged to call Animal Services.

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