The Pet Tree House - Where Pets Are Family Too : A Woman Found a Baby Raccoon and Took it Into Her Home: 21 People Were Exposed to Rabies The Pet Tree House - Where Pets Are Family Too : A Woman Found a Baby Raccoon and Took it Into Her Home: 21 People Were Exposed to Rabies

Sunday, July 8, 2018

A Woman Found a Baby Raccoon and Took it Into Her Home: 21 People Were Exposed to Rabies

Fort Collins, Colorado  — A baby raccoon that tested positive for rabies in Weld County, Colorado came into contact with 21 people before being tested.

A woman found the raccoon on her property and took it into her home after it was abandoned by its mother, according to a news release.

The raccoon was frequently held and would climb and lick the exposed individuals, Weld County health communications supervisor Rachel Freeman said.

Everyone who was exposed has already begun post-exposure treatment, the release stated.

“It is very important that people not touch or go near wild animals," Mark Wallace, Weld County health department executive director, said.

How to prevent being exposed to rabies:
  • Don't touch, feed or handle wild animals and be cautious around stray dogs and cats.
  • Leave orphaned animals alone. Baby animals often appear to be orphaned when they are not. The parent animal may not return if people are too close.
  • If you find a wild animal that appears to be sick, injured, or orphaned, contact your local animal control or a local veterinary clinic.
  • Do not feed, touch or handle wild animals and be cautious of stray dogs and cats.
  • Have dogs, cats, horses and livestock vaccinated regularly by a licensed veterinarian.
  • Keep food inside. Feed pets inside and do not feed wild animals.
  • Spay or neuter your pets to reduce the number of stray animals.
If you think you have been exposed to rabies, contact your doctor immediately. Rabies is almost always fatal if left untreated, but medicine is available if treatment is started before symptoms appear, according to a news release.

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