The heat isn’t the only danger for our dogs during the summer month. Recently, Alabama’s Baldwin County recorded the 8th case of how a rabid fox attacks dog since May this year. The Alabama Department of Public Health has issued a warning about rabies exposure since the incident.
Six of the eight rabid bites have been against people, and two, including the last one – against dogs.
The fox attacked the last dog while he and his owner were taking a walk home on Baldwin County 65. The owner repelled the fox using a pole. Police officers later tracked down the rabid fox and shot it.
The Mobile State Public Health Laboratory confirmed that the fox had rabies after an inspection of the body.
“Luckily, the fox did not bite the woman and her dog was current on vaccinations and received a booster,” Environmental Director Greg Dunn said. “This incident illustrates the importance of being alert and keeping your pets properly immunized.”
“Rabies prevention is multifaceted; it involves people taking precautions with wildlife, making sure their pets are current on rabies vaccinations, and always reporting an animal bite or other exposure to their medical provider or the health department,” said State Public Health Veterinarian Dr. Dee W. Jones.
Baldwin County advises residents and dog owners everywhere to take the following precautions:
- Don‘t let your pets run loose. Confine them in a fenced yard or keep them on a leash.
- Don‘t leave pet food or food scraps around your residence as it can attract wildlife.
- Don’t keep or feed illegally wildlife as pets.
- Keep away from domestic or wild animals that are displaying a strange and unusual behavior.
- Caution children to follow these same rules.
- Caution children to immediately inform an adult if they’ve been scratched or bitten by any animal.
- Anyone that’s been bitten or scratched by an animal should immediately wash the wound with soap and water, apply first aid, and seek urgent medical attention.
- Vaccinate all your pets and cattle against rabies in accordance with state law guidelines.
Guidelines such as these may seem unnecessary to some, but as we see yet another month when a rabid fox attacks dog wide in the open, it’s important for people to take precautions.