Coral Springs’ first rabid raccoon incident occurred last week near Westview and Riverside drives. The Health Department caught the raccoon, which tested positive for rabies after interacting with a resident’s dog. The dog is now in quarantine and is expected to fully recover. Rabies in humans is very rare in the U.S., but rabies in wildlife animals is common. Rabid animals may attack people or other animals for no reason, or they may lose their fear of people and seem to be unnaturally friendly.
The Broward County Health Department and Animal Care recommend the following precautions:
1. Avoid contact with wild animals because they could be infected with rabies. If bitten or scratched, clean the wound with soap and water immediately and seek medical attention.
2. For the protection of domestic animals and humans, County law requires all cats and dogs four months or older to receive a yearly vaccination and wear a license tag.
3. Keep pets away from wildlife, especially at night when wildlife are most active.
4. Report any aggressive, sick or injured raccoons, foxes or bats by calling 954-359-1313 ex. 400 (Animal Care Dispatch) from 7 a.m. to 5:30 p.m., Monday through Friday. Call 954-765-5124 (Fire Central Dispatch) between 5:30 p.m. and 7 a.m. weekdays, and 24-hours a day on weekends and holidays.
5. Do not feed any wildlife.
6. Do not leave pet food outside because this will attract wildlife to your yard.