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HEALTH DEPARTMENT WARNS OF RABID SKUNK FOUND ON 2nd STREET

Friday, August 23, 2019 For more information contact: Skip Parr or Cynthia Mosher at 274-6688 HEALTH DEPARTMENT WARNS OF RABID SKUNK FOUND ON 2ndSTREET (ITHACA, NY, Friday, August 23, 2019) – The Tompkins County Health Department reports that a skunk located on 2nd Street, in the City of Ithaca was determined to be rabid by the New York State Rabies Laboratory on Friday, August 23, 2019. This skunk had been observed on Cascadilla Street on Monday, August 19th, and on 2nd Street on Tuesday, August 20th, before being captured by Tompkins County Animal Control. Anyone who has questions or thinks they or their pet may have come in contact with the skunk or any other wild animal should contact the Tompkins County Health Department at (607) 274-6688. Rabies is normally transmitted by the bite of a wild or domestic rabid mammal. Exposures can also occur if saliva from a rabid animal enters the body through a mucous membrane, a wound that bled within 24 hours previous to the exposure, or an older wound showing signs of a bacterial infection. Do not handle pets or objects that may be contaminated with saliva from a potentially rabid animal without wearing protective gloves. Wash your hands immediately with soap and water if you do touch the saliva. The Health Department reminds everyone to:

  1. Report the following incidents to the Tompkins County Health Department at 274-6688:· All animal bites or scratches. · Any human or pet contact with saliva or other potentially infectious material (brain tissue, spinal tissue, or cerebro-spinal fluid) of wild animals or any animal suspected of having rabies. · All bat bites, scratches, or any mere skin contact with a bat, or a bat in a room with a child, or sleeping or impaired person.

  2. Avoid contact with any unfamiliar cats or dogs and any wild animals.

  3. All cats, dogs and ferrets must have initial rabies vaccinations administered no later than four months of age.  Keep vaccinations current!

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