Rabies advisory issued for Camden
The Coastal Health District has issued a rabies precaution for Camden County due to recent incidents involving infected animals.
According to the district's website, a stray cat tested positive in Woodbine earlier this month after biting a woman. The incident occurred hear the 12000 block of Highway 17 near Grover Road.
The health district advisory also noted that increased raccoon activity also has been reported in downtown St. Marys near the elementary school. A few downtown residents have reported raccoons that appear to be sick or acting in an unusual manner.
"Camden County residents are encouraged to stay away from and report any animals acting strangely to Camden County Animal Control at (912) 576-7395," advises the health district.
Rabies is a potentially deadly virus that is primarily spread by infected animals. The Camden County Health Department Environmental Health office provided further tips to help citizens protect themselves:
• Avoid contact with animals you don’t know.
• Make sure your pets receive the proper immunizations. Dogs and cats should get rabies vaccines by four months of age, followed by a booster shot one year later, and another one every year as prescribed by your veterinarian.
• Do not handle, feed, or unintentionally attract wild animals with open garbage cans or by leaving pet food out at night.
• Never adopt wild animals or bring them into your home. Do not try to nurse sick animals to health. Call animal control or a properly licensed animal rescue agency for assistance.
• Teach children to never handle unfamiliar animals, wild or domestic, even if they appear friendly. “Love your own, leave other animals alone” is a good principle for children to learn.
The health district also lists the symptoms of rabies in animals, which include change in behavior, biting, aggression, showing no fear of natural enemies (such as humans), foaming at the mouth and paralysis.
Those who are bitten by animals acting in this manner are urged to seek medical care immediately and contact Camden County Animal Control at (912) 576-7395 and the Camden County Health Department Environmental Health office at (912) 729-6012.