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DeKalb County confirms fourth rabies case since September

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DeKalb County confirms fourth rabies case since September


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A raccoon. Photo obtained via Wikimedia Commons

DeKalb County on Tuesday confirmed the fourth case of rabies discovered in a raccoon in the county since September.

The latest case involves a raccoon that was captured on April 6 in the 3100 block of Albatross Lane.

“Rabies is a disease that affects the brain. It’s usually passed from animal to animal but can be passed from animals to people,” the county said. “The virus is spread through saliva, usually from a bite of an animal that has the disease. Anyone who has been bitten or scratched by an animal should seek medical attention immediately. Additionally, residents are advised to watch pets and contact DeKalb County Animal Control if unusual behavior occurs. Rabies can be prevented by a vaccine. Residents are responsible for vaccinating pets every year and registering the tag with DeKalb County Animal Control.”

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County health officials identified cases of rabies in raccoons in September, February and March.

After the county reported a third case of rabies in March, a spokesperson said the number of recent cases is not unusual.

A county spokesperson says the number of recent cases reported is not unusual.

“Georgia is a rabies endemic state meaning the virus is present all year long,” the spokesperson said. “Wildlife such as raccoons, bats, foxes, coyotes, and bobcats are more frequently infected and, in our area, raccoons and bats are the most common vector animals. Opossums, rabbits, hares and squirrels rarely have the virus.  It is not unusual this time of year to see several cases of rabies in wildlife.”

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