Worcester Co. Dog Euthanized After Exposure to Rabid Raccoon - WBOC-TV 16, Delmarvas News Leader, FOX 21 -

Worcester Co. Dog Euthanized After Exposure to Rabid Raccoon

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SNOW HILL, Md.– The Worcester County Health Department confirmed Monday that a dog from the Snow Hill area tested positive for rabies and was subsequently euthanized after exposure to a rabid raccoon.

Officials said the dog, a family pet, had a fight with a raccoon several weeks ago, prior to the development of rabies last week. Once rabies symptoms developed in the dog, officials said the owner notified Worcester County Animal Control.

Officials said based on those symptoms and the reported exposure to a raccoon, the health department was contacted and the dog was euthanized and sent for rabies testing at the Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene's Rabies Laboratory.  The positive results were received late Friday.

A number of individuals, mostly family, were exposed to the rabid dog and appropriate medical assessments were initiated on Friday for those exposed and post-exposure rabies treatment started, officials said.

The incident follows an unusually high incidence this year in the county of rabid animals, mostly raccoons, which have come into contact with either people or pets. Officials said to date in 2013, the health department has confirmed 43 rabid animals consisting of 37 raccoon, three foxes, one groundhog, one bat and one dog.

There have also been 36 other suspected rabies investigations where the suspected animal was not able to be tested. Officials said this latest case illustrated the importance of vaccinating pets against this deadly disease.

For further information regarding rabies, go to www.worcesterhealth.org or contact your veterinarian.

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