Anne Arundel Co. health officials alerted to rabid raccoon in Annapolis

Anne Arundel County health officials are asking anyone who may have come in contact with a raccoon in the Annapolis Roads Community near the intersection of Ogleton Road and Queen Anne Circle to contact the department immediately.

The alert from the Anne Arundel County Department of Health comes after a raccoon found in that location on October 30 tested positive for rabies.

Preventive treatment could be required for any persons or pets who came into direct contact with an infected raccoon, especially pets with unexplained wounds or displaying unusual behavior.

The disease often spreads through a bite or scratch of an infected animal, such as a groundhog, cat, fox or raccoon. Rabies can also spread when the saliva of an infected animal comes in contact with the eyes, nose, mouth or open cut of a person or another animal

According to the CDC, rabies can cause pain, fatigue, headaches, fever, and irritability. These symptoms are usually followed by seizures, hallucinations, and paralysis. Almost always, human rabies are fatal unless treatment is promptly administered.

Initially, symptoms may not be visible. It could take weeks, or even months after a bite, for symptoms to present themselves.

County health officials advise residents not to feed wild or stray animals. Pet owners are advised to keep their animals’ rabies vaccinations current.

If you believe you or your pet might be infected, call the department of health at 410-222-7256.

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