A third case of rabies in a wild animal for 2021 was confirmed March 31 – this time in a bat discovered on Dutch Lane in Hunt.
Kerr County Animal Services Director Reagan Givens said his department received a call on March 29 from a resident who said their family’s pet cat had come into contact with a bat on their property on March 26. “An animal control officer responded to their residence to pick up the bat and prepare it for shipment to the lab, and we received word that the bat was positive for rabies,” said Givens.
This latest positive rabies case is the third such case in Kerr County within a week’s time. There were only four positive rabies county reported in 2020. There were 7 positive rabies cases in 2019, 8 cases in 2018, 1 case in 2017 and 35 cases in 2016.
Creatures most likely to spread rabies are bats, coyotes, foxes, racoons and skunks. All of these animals can transmit the disease to cats, dogs, cows, horses, goats and ferrets, who, in turn, can infect their human owners.
Givens wants to remind citizens to never approach a wild animal, even if it appears somewhat friendly. Also, do not put out food that may attract wild animals near your home.
Anyone who is bitten by any animal or exposed to an animal suspected of having rabies should seek medical care immediately. According to the World Health Organization, once clinical symptoms have set in, rabies is virtually 100% fatal.
In Kerr County, pet owners must have their dogs or cats vaccinated by the time they are four months old. Booster vaccines should be given at least once every 3 years. Pet owners should keep proper certification that their pets are vaccinated, and those forms are furnished by the veterinarian who provides the shots.
For additional information call KCAS at (830) 257-3100.