The City of Abilene would like to advise residents living in south Abilene’s Mesquite Forest neighborhood and surrounding areas that a bat found on April 13, 2022 at a residence on Queen Ann’s Lace has tested positive for rabies.
Abilene Animal Services received notification of the bat’s positive rabies result April 20, 2022, and has properly disposed of the animal. A neighborhood dog was found playing with the rabid bat. That dog was found to be current on all vaccinations and is not harmed or considered a danger to other animals or residents in the area.
Rabies is a deadly virus that affects the central nervous system. The virus is spread through the saliva of infected animals, most commonly after being bitten by a rabid animal. Rabies infection can only be treated through a series of shots administered by a healthcare professional, and anyone potentially infected with rabies must seek immediate care as the virus may be untreatable once rabies symptoms are present.
Signs of rabies in animals include abnormal behavior such as nocturnal animals being active during the day, approaching humans or other animals, difficulty with movement, and unusual sounds. A wild animal that allows you to approach or handle it is likely ill or injured and will bite in self-defense.
Unusual animal activity and suspected rabid animals should be reported immediately to Abilene Animal Services at 698-0085.
Abilene Animal Services offers these tips concerning exposure to rabies:
Do not feed, handle, or touch wild animals such as bats, skunks, and raccoons.
Teach children to stay away from wild or deceased animals.
Do not allow pets to roam freely, as free-roaming increases their chance of exposure without your knowledge.
Keep your pet’s rabies vaccination current.
Immediately contact a veterinarian if your pet is bitten or scratched by a wild animal.
Consult with a physician immediately after possible rabies exposure.
Report all animal bites to animal control authorities; the biting animal must be quarantined or tested for rabies.