SCHD says bat with rabies found in Shawnee County

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Shawnee county is asking people to be aware of the signs and symptoms of rabies because a bat found in the area tested positive for the disease.

The Shawnee County Health Department says rabies is fatal, but preventable. The disease usually is carried by raccoons, bats, skunks and foxes.

Some of the early warning signs include weakness, fever and headache. SCHD says within days, you could experience brain dysfunction, anxiety and confusion.

Rabies vaccinations can treat the disease. Vaccination is four shots over two weeks. The first shot needs to be done at a doctor's office. The rest can be obtained at the SCHD's immunization department at 2115 SW 10th Avenue and self administered on the third, seventh, and fourteenth days after the initial shot.

Tips to prevent rabies:

  • Have your veterinarian vaccinate all dogs, cats, ferrets, horses and valuable breeding stock and show animals (cattle and sheep) against rabies
  • If bitten by an animal, seek medical attention and report the bite to your local public health department or animal control department immediately
  • If your animal is bitten, contact your veterinarian or local health department for advice
  • If you wake up in a room with a bat present, even if there is no evidence of a bite or scratch, seek medical attention
  • Do not handle or feed wild animals. Never adopt wild animals or bring them into your home
  • Do not try to nurse sick wild animals back to health. Call animal control or an animal rescue agency for assistance
  • Teach children never to handle unfamiliar animals, wild or domestic, even if they appear friendly