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February 10, 2016

County Health Department Reports Rabid Fox in Minetto

MINETTO – The Oswego County Health Department reported today that a fox in the Town of Minetto has tested positive for the rabies virus. Two people are undergoing post-exposure rabies treatment as a result of an encounter with the fox.

Jiancheng Huang, Oswego County Public Health Director, said the recent mild weather is causing wild animals to be more active than usual this time of year.

“The first rabies-positive animal report usually comes more toward the springtime, but we’ve already had a positive diagnosis during the middle of the winter,” said Huang. “We’ve had unusually mild weather over the past several weeks and many wild animals are quite active. Residents are reminded not to disturb wild animals and pet owners need to make sure their pets are protected against rabies to avoid getting rabies infection.”

To reduce the risk of rabies in animals and humans, people should take the following steps:

Any time a person or pet comes in contact with a sick or suspicious-acting animal, the incident should be reported to the county health department as soon as possible. A bite or scratch on the skin should be washed immediately with soap and water.

To report a possible exposure or for more information about rabies, call the Oswego County Health Department weekdays at 349-3564 or 1-800-596-3200, ext. 3564. In an emergency during evenings, weekends, or holidays, call the health department’s answering service at 341-0086.

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