Oakland County Health Division reports a confirmed case of rabies in a skunk removed from Rochester Hills.
“Rabies is present in our communities and is most often found in bats, raccoons, skunks, and foxes,” Leigh-Anne Stafford, health officer for Oakland County said. “People and their pets need to be careful and avoid encounters with unfamiliar animals.”
The rabies virus is found in the saliva of infected animals and is spread through bites or scratches.
If a wild animal is found behaving strangely such as having problems swallowing or exhibiting lots of drool, call the Oakland County Animal Shelter and Pet Adoption Center at 248-858-1070 for assistance.
If a person or household pet is bitten by any wild animal, wash the affected area thoroughly with soap and water before seeking immediate medical or veterinary attention. To report an animal bite, call the Health Division at 248-858-1286.
A few simple steps to keep pets protected from rabies like having pets vaccinated regularly, keeping pets indoors, using a leash when walking dogs, and not feeding or putting water for pets outside.
The Oakland County Health Division recommends Michiganders never directly handle stray, wild, or dead animals as well as keeping garbage covered as these items may attract wild or stray animals.
More information about rabies can be found on the Health Division’s website at oakgov.com/health.