ADAMS COUNTY, Pa. — A case of rabies has been confirmed in Adams County, according to the county’s SPCA.
The SPCA said in a news release that a feral cat, injured and dragging its back end, bit a Huntington Township resident Monday.
According to the SPCA, the cat was trapped, euthanized and tested for rabies, which came back positive.
The resident is being treated at this time, the SPCA added.
The SPCA issued the following information on rabies and how it can be prevented:
Rabies is an infectious disease affecting the nervous system of humans and other mammals. Infection can occur through the bite or scratch of an infected animal, or if saliva from such an animal gets into the eyes, nose, mouth or an opening in the skin. It is transmitted from animals to humans or from animals to other animals. There have been no reported cases of human-to-human transmission other than through organ transplantation.
It is imperative to report animal bites and scratches immediately to your family doctor so that preventive treatment can be initiated. Anyone who has been bitten, scratched by, or come in close contact with, a stray, wild or unfamiliar animal, should immediately contact their health care provider or call the Rabies hotline at 877-PA HEALTH.
Rabies is almost completely preventable. The Adams County SPCA recommends that members of the public take the following important steps to stay clear of exposure:
- All dogs and house cats, 3 months of age and older are required by Pennsylvania law to be vaccinated against rabies by a licensed veterinarian. Consider vaccinating livestock and horses as well. It is recommended to consult with your private veterinarian if you have any questions regarding whether your animal(s) should be vaccinated against rabies.
• Reduce the possibility of your pets being exposed to rabies by not letting them roam free.
• Spaying or neutering your pet may reduce the tendency to roam or fight and, thus, reduce the chance they will be exposed to rabies.
• Do not keep your pet’s food or water outdoors; bowls can attract wild and stray animals.
• Keep your garbage securely covered.
• Do not touch or otherwise handle wild or unfamiliar animals, including cats and dogs, even if they appear friendly.
• Wild animals, particularly raccoons and bats, are the highest risk of exposure to rabies. Do not handle or go near wild animals even if they appear approachable.