Panama City Beach, Fla. ̵
Rabies is a lethal viral infection of the nervous system that is transmitted from animals to animals or animals to humans by biting, scratching, or exposing the mucosa to infected saliva.
Six animals have tested positive for rabies in Bay County this year.
The existing county-wide rabies alert is extended for another 60 days. The alarm was previously extended in March, after a rabid baby was taken near East 11th Street and Everitt Avenue in the Cedar Grove area. Also in March, a rabid raccoon was killed by dogs out of Oakenshaw Drive in Youngstown, and a rabid gray fox was killed off the northern end of Resota Beach Road in Southport.
In February, a rabid baby was killed by a dog along Sukoshi Drive in Callaway and an amber gray fox was killed just east of Lake Merial along Prosper Road in Southport.
If you own a dog or cat over four months, it must be vaccinated against rabies by an authorized veterinarian. If you give the vaccine yourself and you are not an authorized veterinarian, it does not count and your animal is considered unvaccinated. Unvaccinated dogs and cats should be kept indoors. It is cruel to put an unvaccinated dog or cat outdoors unprotected against this deadly disease.
An unvaccinated pet can bring rabies into your home. Cats are domestic animals most likely to be infected with rabies. Keep cats indoors. Do not touch wild animals or swelling cats or dogs. No animal is too young to have rabies. Never touch a bat!
The Florida Department of Health would like to remind citizens that the unintentional or accidental feeding of raccoons is prohibited in Florida. Feed dogs and cats indoors and keep the dirt covered. Feeding beans concentrate raccoons on abnormally high densities and increase the likelihood of rabies transfer from raccoons to raccoons and raccoons to dogs, cats and humans. Infected raccoons may appear normal. Moving an infected raccoon can spread rabies.
If the bit or scratched by an animal, wash the wound immediately with soap and water. Search for medical treatment as needed and report damage to the Florida Department of Health in Bay County at (850) 872-4455. If the animal is wild or wild, call 911 or Bay County Animal Services at (850) 767-3333 and report the animal's location. In Lynn Haven City, contact Lynn Haven Police Department at (850) 265-1112. Follow up. Rabies are prevented when the treatment is given on time.
The following advice has been issued:
• If your dog or cat fights with a wild animal, contact the Florida Department of Health at Bay County immediately. The wild animal must be tested for rabies. Your animal may need to be quarantined. Do not take suspect healthy animals in the head.
• Do not touch animals that are not yours. Avoid contact with all wildlife, especially raccoons, bats, bobcats, otters, foxes, skunks and coyotes. No animal is too young to have rabies. A dull animal can act kindly.
• Wear rubber gloves and goggles when hitting / slaughtering in wild animals to avoid exposure to rabies and other diseases.
• Boil all meat thoroughly to 165 degrees.
• Do not breed animals that are ill.
• For animal health questions, contact a veterinarian.
• Teach your children about rabies and never to wear a bat!
For more information on rabies, visit the Florida Department of Health website at http://www.doh.state.fl.us/environment/medicine/rabies/rabies-index.html or contact the Florida Department of Health in Bay County at 850-872-4720 or follow us on Twitter @FLHealthEmerald.