Rabid cat bit several people in Texas, officials say. City now trapping feral cats
A rabid cat bit several residents of a Texas city before it died, officials said.
The City of Clyde Animal Control department was notified of the bites on Sunday, March 19, according to a news release. A Woodland neighborhood resident made the report.
Workers caught the cat and placed it in quarantine, officials said, and the animal died on March 21.
City officials said the cat was immediately sent to the Texas Department of State Health Services Zoonotic lab in Austin for testing. The critter tested positive for rabies on March 24.
The residents who were bitten by the cat have been referred to medical professionals for rabies treatment, officials said. Other residents are asked to “avoid animals displaying unusual behavior” — including animals that seem extra friendly.
Clyde Animal Control said it is trapping feral cats in the neighborhood in an effort “to contain and control the spread of the rabies virus.”
If you had any contact with feral cats in the Woodland neighborhood between March 8 and March 21, contact Terry Davis at 325-439-1847.
Clyde is about 135 miles southwest of downtown Fort Worth.
What is rabies?
“Rabies is a preventable viral disease most often transmitted through the bite of a rabid animal,” according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. “The rabies virus infects the central nervous system of mammals, ultimately causing disease in the brain and death.”
In the U.S., the rabies virus is mostly found in wild animals, experts said.
How is rabies treated?
If you have been exposed to rabies, experts recommend postexposure prophylaxis (PEP).
PEP includes a dose of human rabies immune globulin and a rabies vaccine on the day you are exposed, followed by additional doses of the rabies vaccine on days 3, 7 and 14, according to the CDC.
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