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Fox Tests Positive for Rabies, 2 Bitten

A fox that attacked and bit two residents in the North Rugby/Highway 191 area on Monday, May 13, has tested positive for the rabies virus.

County officials received confirmation Wednesday from the North Carolina State Laboratory of Public Health.

This is the first positive rabies case in Henderson County since 2011.

Officials with the Henderson County Sheriff’s Animal Enforcement Division and the Department of Public Health are urging residents to ensure their pet’s rabies vaccination is current and to contact a veterinarian immediately if their pet seems injured from an unknown cause, displays unusual behaviors, or appears sick—even if the animal is current on its rabies vaccination.

Residents may call 697-4912 if they think their pet was exposed or if they have questions.

Do not approach, handle, or touch any stray animals.

Law enforcement officers are canvasing the area looking for stray animals and checking with residents to be sure their pets are vaccinated.

The affected area is currently a one square mile radius from Bowman Street.

“We cannot overemphasize the importance for people in this area and all across the county to have their animals vaccinated,” said Tom Bridges, Health Director. “Rabies is in our county, and vaccination is the law. It’s there to protect not only our health, but pets as well. 

Rabies is a deadly viral disease affecting the central nervous system. Rabies can be prevented but not cured.

A healthy animal or human can get rabies when bitten, licked, or scratched by a sick animal.


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