Bat found at Guelph home tests positive for rabies: public health
Public health officials say one person in Guelph has been exposed to a bat that tested positive for rabies.
They are using the incident to remind residents to avoid contact with wildlife to prevent contracting the deadly disease.
Pet owners should also remain vigilant and vaccinate their dogs and cats for rabies.
Wellington-Dufferin-Guelph Public Health’s medical officer of health and CEO Dr. Nicola Mercer said rabies is a fatal disease if left untreated.
“If you encounter wildlife, such as a fox, raccoon, skunk or bat, avoid touching it,” she said. “If you think you have been bitten or scratched, contact your physician immediately or go to a hospital emergency department.”
The agency is also urging homeowners not to touch or try to catch a bat if it’s in their home. Instead, call animal control.
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The incident follows two cases of bats testing positive for rabies in Guelph in 2018.
Anyone who has had direct contact with a bat should call their family doctor or go to the hospital.
Rabies is transmitted through the saliva of an infected animal, usually through a bite. However, health officials said saliva can also enter the body through scratches, open wounds or mucous membranes of the mouth, nose and eyes.
More information can be found on Wellington-Dufferin-Guelph Public Health’s website.
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