Rabid raccoon attacks dog in Palm Beach County

Published On: Sep 19 2012 09:58:51 AM EDT

Weekend results from the Florida State Lab confirmed a raccoon that attacked a dog on Caloosa Boulevard near Bee Line Highway in northwestern Palm Beach County was rabid. 


In this instance a Tan and White 65 pound dog named Champ was attacked and bitten on Thursday by the raccoon.  Animal Care and Control was notified and sent the deceased raccoon for testing.  Champ sustained bites on the leg and was treated by a local veterinarian with a rabies booster shot and antibiotics.  The Palm Beach County Health Department has advised the dog remain in strict quarantine for 180 days as it was not current with its rabies vaccination when attacked. 


All citizens in Palm Beach County should be aware that rabies is present in the wild animal population and domestic animals are at risk if not vaccinated.  The public is asked to maintain a heightened awareness that rabies is active in this area.  Animal Care and Control has placed informational flyers in the neighborhood where the bite took place. 


An animal with rabies could infect other wild animals or domestic animals that have not been vaccinated against rabies. All domestic animals should be vaccinated against rabies and all wildlife contact should be avoided, particularly raccoons, bats, foxes, skunks, otters, bobcats and coyotes.  Rabies is a disease of the nervous system and is fatal to warm blooded animals and humans. The only treatment for human exposure to rabies is rabies specific immune globulin and rabies immunization.  Appropriate treatment started soon after the exposure will protect an exposed person from the disease.

The following advice is issued:

·         Prevent bats from entering living quarters or occupied spaces in homes, churches, schools, and other similar areas, where they might come in contact with people and pets.

For further information on rabies, go to the Florida Department of Health website: website: http://www.doh.state.fl.us/environment/medicine/rabies/rabies-index.html or contact the Health Department, www.pbchd.com,  561-671-4184. Animals exhibiting signs of sickness and aggressive behavior should be reported to Animal Care and Control at 561-233-1200.