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Local rabies

  • Published
  • By Staff Reports
  • 82d AMDS Public Health Flight
One of nine adopted shepherd mix puppies from Henrietta, Texas was confirmed positive for rabies.  The puppy was brought home by a resident of Wichita Falls and exhibited neurological symptoms.  Rabies was confirmed after the owner was bit and the puppy was euthanized. 

The Wichita Falls Animal Services is working hard to ensure that all other puppies from the litter are quarantined or tested.  Additionally, proper treatment must be given to anyone who was exposed to the puppies.  It is highly unlikely that all potentially exposed persons are at risk for rabies, but it is absolutely essential to obtain proper evaluation from the Wichita County Public Health District providers.

Rabies is a preventable viral disease.  It is not contagious person-to-person.  Rabid animals spread the disease through their saliva.  Any mammal can be infected with rabies; typically, wild animals such as raccoons, skunks, bats, and foxes are known to carry the disease.  Infection can affect the central nervous system, causing disease in the brain and death.

There is no imminent health risk from rabies in the local area. Usual prevention and control measures should persist.  Never touch or try to pet or catch a wild animal, and vaccinate all pets. 

If you think you've been exposed to rabies, seek medical care as soon as possible.  Post-exposure treatment is 100% effective when given prior to the onset of symptoms.  If you or someone you know has been bitten by an animal, please seek medical attention and report to Public Health.

The Wichita County Public Health District has located and acquired 8 of the 9 puppies.  The team continues to work diligently to find the last puppy. 

For questions, concerns or any information, please contact the 82d AMDS Public Health Flight at 676-3052.