Officials from Queen Anne’s County Health Department and the Department of Emergency Services warn residents to be aware of a recent attack by a rabid raccoon in Queen Anne’s County.
“Although rare this most recent incident was an unprovoked attack on a resident by a suspected rabid raccoon. This occurred in the Chester area, but we urge all our residents to take precautions.” Says Dr. Ciotola, QAC Health Officer
Although human rabies cases are preventable and rare, the disease can be fatal once contracted. People usually get rabies from the bite of a rabid animal. It is also possible, but rare, for people to get rabies from non-bite exposures, which can include scratches, abrasions, or open wounds that are exposed to saliva or other potentially infectious material from a rabid animal.
If you think you have been exposed to rabies it is important to seek immediate medical attention. Rabies is untreatable once symptoms show.
Residents are asked to help prevent rabies attacks by vaccinating pets, staying away from wildlife and seeking immediate medical care after potential exposure. To report nuisance, injured or sick wildlife, call toll-free in Maryland 1-877-463-6497. US Department Agriculture (USDA), Wildlife Services Operators are available from 8:00 am to 4:30 pm, Monday through Friday, except State holidays. For phone numbers outside of Maryland, please call: 410-349-8130. Not all animals with rabies will foam at the mouth, this is more common in the advanced stages. They may also exhibit odd behavior such as staying awake during the day if they are commonly nocturnal.
For more information about the rabies virus visit https://www.cdc.gov/rabies/about.html