Galloway skunk marks county’s 7th rabies case in 2014

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GALLOWAY – A skunk collected from the 200 block of Odessa Avenue in Galloway has been confirmed as the seventh case of rabies in Atlantic County this year, but the first found in Galloway, according to the county Division of Public Health. 

This is the second rabies case found in a skunk. The other previous cases involved four raccoons and one fox.

The skunk was found in the property owner’s yard and exhibited aggressive behavior before it crossed the street into another property, where it was captured and removed by the local animal control officer, a county news release stated. It was sent to the state lab for testing where it was confirmed positive for the viral disease on Aug. 28.

An investigation by the county Division of Public Health has determined that there were no human exposures. 

Public Health Officer Patricia Diamond strongly encourages residents to vaccinate their pets to protect them from the potentially deadly virus as well as to provide a barrier to human exposure. Residents are also advised to avoid contact with wildlife as another protective measure.

The Atlantic County Animal Shelter provides a free rabies vaccination clinic each month for dogs and cats. The next clinic will be held from 9 to 11 a.m. Sunday, Sept. 21 at 240 Old Turnpike Road in Pleasantville. Dogs must be brought on leashes and cats in carriers. For more information call 609-485-2345 or see www.aclink.org/animalshelter.     

To learn more about rabies and how to protect your pets and family members, see www.aclink.org/publichealth .


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