Rabies confirmed in 2 more skunks in Oakland County


A skunk odor plagued residents of a Buffalo, N.Y., neighborhood this year, the New York Daily News reported. Apparently, after being trapped by officials, the animals were being killed and then stored in an outdoor freezer.

Oakland County health officials say two more skunks have tested positive for rabies.

Oakland County Health Division received confirmation today of two new rabies cases in skunks removed from Southfield and Farmington Hills.

In 2019, rabies has been verified in four bats and eight skunks in Oakland County. Residents are urged to avoid wild animals such as skunks, bats, raccoons, foxes, and stray cats and dogs to protect against rabies.

Previous: Health officials confirm case of rabies in dead skunk found in Southfield

“We continue to work with partnering agencies to investigate the recent increase of animal rabies cases in Oakland County,” said Leigh-Anne Stafford, health officer for Oakland County. “We are particularly interested in three dead skunks removed in Southfield within a mile radius of each other.”

Anyone who sees dead wild animals in the area is asked to contact the Health Division at 248-858-1286. If a wild animal is acting strangely, call local animal control.

Rabies is spread through bites and scratches because it's found in the saliva of infected animals.

Residents are urged to stay away from wild animals, including skunks, bats, raccoons, foxes, and stray cats and dogs.

If a wild animal bites you or your pet, wash the area and contact a medical or veterinary professional. Animal bites can be reported to the Health Division at 248-858-1286.

Rabies safety tips from the health division:

  • Have pets vaccinated regularly. This will protect them if exposed to animals with the disease and prevent them from becoming ill and infecting humans.
  • Do not handle stray, wild, or dead animals.

Call local animal control experts for help if an animal is acting strangely, including:

  • Having problems swallowing
  • Exhibiting lots of drool or saliva
  • Appearing tamer than you would expect
  • Biting at everything
  • Having trouble moving or is paralyzed
  • Keep pets indoors or supervised to limit their exposure to wild animals that may be rabid.
  • Use a leash when walking dogs or keep them in a fenced-in yard.
  • Do not feed or put water for pets outside
  • Keep garbage securely covered, as these items may attract wild or stray animals.

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