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Case of Rabies confirmed in Adams County, man bit by feral cat

"ADAMS COUNTY, PA — The Adams County SPCA announced on Monday that a case of rabies was confirmed in Huntington Township after a man was bit by a feral cat.

On July 1, 2019, a York Springs resident was bit by a feral cat that, according to a press release, looked "injured or sickly" and was dragging its back end.

The cat was trapped after it bit the man and taken to the Adams County SPCA to be tested for rabies and euthanized. Rabies tests require that an animal be euthanized in order to test for the virus.

The cat was then sent to the PA Diagnostic Laboratory in Harrisburg where it tested positive for the rabies virus. The man bitten by the cat is being treated at this time, according to the Adams County SPCA.

The Adams County SPCA says that it is imperative to report animal bites and scratches immediately to your family doctor so that treatment can be initiated.

They add that anyone who has been bitten, scratched by, or come in close contact with, a stray, wild or unfamiliar animal, should immediately contact their health care provider or call the Rabies hotline at 877-PA HEALTH.

The SPCA also says that rabies is completely preventable and provides these tips to stay clear of exposure to the virus.

All dogs and house cats, 3 months of age and older are required by Pennsylvania law to be vaccinated against rabies by a licensed veterinarian. Consider vaccinating livestock and horses as well. It is recommended to consult with your private veterinarian if you have any questions regarding whether your animal(s) should be vaccinated against rabies.

Reduce the possibility of your pets being exposed to rabies by not letting them roam free.Spaying or neutering your pet may reduce the tendency to roam or fight and, thus, reduce the chance they will be exposed to rabies.Do not keep your pet's food or water outdoors; bowls can attract wild and stray animals.Keep your garbage securely covered.Do not touch or otherwise handle wild or unfamiliar animals, including cats and dogs, even if they appear friendly.Wild animals, particularly raccoons and bats, are the highest risk of exposure to rabies. Do not handle or go near wild animals even if they appear approachable."

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