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Non-Domestic Animals in Russell Test Positive for Rabies

Rabies AlertSeveral non-domestic animals within the City of Russell have tested positive for the rabies virus according to a press release from Russell Animal Control.

Animals with rabies tend to behave bizarrely and often aggressively, increasing the chances that they will bite another animal or a person and transmit the disease.

Most people are knowledgeable enough about the disease to be wary of an animal that's foaming at the mouth, but there are many other symptoms an infected creature may exhibit.

Rabies signs are grouped into two forms known as either the Furious form of rabies or the Paralytic form. An animal may show signs of only one type or progress from one form to the other. Some animals will show no signs of rabies other than death.

The Furious form of rabies is more familiar to most people. Signs may include aggression, loss of fear, daytime activity by nocturnal species, attraction to noise and human activity, excess vocalization, dilated pupils, difficulty swallowing, loss of appetite, restlessness, and/or biting at objects and other animals. Animals may or may not drool.

The Paralytic form of rabies may include symptoms such as decreased activity, incoordination, hind limb weakness and/or acting dull. Cats may meow excessively. As the disease progresses, the animal may drop its lower jaw, drool, be unable to swallow, become paralyzed and finally die.

If you own a dog or cat you should be concerned about rabies. With warmer weather approaching, increased contact between humans, their pets and wildlife is likely to occur. You can protect your family and your pet by keeping your pets' rabies vaccinations up-to-date.

Here are a few things that can help with deterring non-domestic animals from your property:

  • Put your garbage in a receptacle that has a secure lid. Make sure that your trash can is secure so that it does not get knocked over. If it does get knocked over, pick your trash up as soon as possible.
  • Feeding pets indoors, or if fed outdoors, removing food immediately after pets eat. Dump out their water bowls in the evenings as well.
  • Do not feed the feral cats in your area.

If you suspect a non-domestic animal being rabid, or have questions, call Russell Animal Control at 785-483-2121.

(Information courtesy Russell Animal Control.)

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