RABIES - AMERICAS (42): USA (MAINE, VIRGINIA, MONTANA) FOX, BAT, HUMAN EXPOSURE
In this posting:
 Maine: fox, human exposure
 Virginia: fox, human exposure
 Montana: bat, human exposure
 Maine: fox, human exposure
Date: Fri 9 Aug 2019
Source: Press Herald [edited]
A 6 year old girl is in good spirits after being bitten by a rabid fox in Bath, according to her mother. The girl was playing outside at a friend's house on Bumpy Hill Road when a fox attacked, chasing her into the home, according to Bath police chief Michael Field. "The male homeowner kicked the fox until it ran outside," Field said in a statement Friday [9 Aug 2019]. The friend's family dog chased the fox and killed it. Police said the fox was confirmed to have rabies Thursday [8 Aug 2019].
（メイン州）バースで、狂犬病のキツネに咬みつかれた6歳の女の子はその後も元気だ、と彼女の母親は伝えた。その少女はBumpy Hill Roadにある友人の家の外で遊んでいたときにキツネに襲われ、家の中まで追いかけられた、とバース警察署長のMichael Fieldは伝えた。「その家の主人は、キツネが外に逃げ出すまで蹴り続けた」とFieldは金曜日（2019年8月9日）に会見で述べた。その友人の家族が飼っていた犬がキツネを追いかけ、殺した。警察はそのキツネが狂犬病ウイルスを持っていたことが木曜日（2019年8月8日）に確認されたと言った。
The dog's vaccinations were up to date, but the girl is undergoing a series of shots because the fox bit the back of her leg, according to her mother. The dog is also doing well, quarantined at home for 45 days.
This is the 6th incidence of a known rabid animal in Bath since February . As of 23 Jul 2019, 49 raccoons, bats, skunks, and foxes had tested positive for rabies this year  in 12 of Maine's 16 counties.
There has been a surge of people who were treated for possible rabies exposure in the midcoast. Ranjic Advani, president of Mid Coast Hospital's medical staff, told The Times Record in July  that the emergency department had treated anywhere from 10-30 people every year over the past decade for rabies exposure
. In 2018, the number surged to more than 50 patients treated for potential rabies exposure.
Last year  saw an increase of rabies incidents in Brunswick, where 9 animals tested positive for rabies, according to the Maine Center for Disease Control and Prevention. Seven people were attacked by rabid foxes there in 2018.
Another 3 animals tested positive for rabies last year  in Lisbon, 2 in Bath, 4 in Bowdoin, and one in West Bath. Statewide, a total of 101 animals tested positive for rabies by the Health and Environmental Testing Laboratory and USDA APHIS Wildlife Services. The majority were raccoons (51), skunks (25), gray foxes (9), and bats (12).
Rabies is a viral disease infecting the nervous system of mammals. It is transmitted primarily through bites from an infected animal. It attacks the nervous system, making the infected animal unusually aggressive, and is fatal.
The US Department of Agriculture is spreading more than 300 000 rabies vaccine baits in northern Maine to stem the occurrences of rabies there. The USDA says it is cost-prohibitive and not logistically feasible to drop the oral vaccination baits statewide.
Bath police are reminding the public to keep animals up-to-date on their vaccinations. "If people see wildlife acting strangely, call the police," Field said. "Also, keep trash covered and secured, especially any with food waste. Lastly, we are hopeful this is an isolated incident and are happy that the little girl is recovering well."
[byline John Swinconeck]
 Virginia: fox, human exposure
Date: Sun 18 Aug 2019
Source: WSET.com [edited]
A Virginia Beach jogger is recovering after being attacked by a vicious rabid fox. "It's a little bit of a blur exactly what all happened, but I ended up in a position where he was coming at me and being aggressive," said the jogger, who fought off the fox, having thought at first it was a cat or coyote lurking in the distance.
"I'm shuffling and moving, and he comes off, then comes at me again, so I have to kick him, and these are not small kicks; these are full up, like he's is airborne into the bushes on the side of the path," said the jogger, who kicked it at least 8 times before he finally skirted off the path. "I'm thinking, how many times am I going to have to kick this fox before he stops coming at me," she said.
Two days later, Virginia Beach officials found a dead fox in the exact area of the attack. The Health Department tested it positive for rabies. The fox left the jogger with wounds on her upper thigh and knees. "It's puncture wounds, but it wasn't like he took a chunk out, thank goodness," she said. She says next time she hits the trail, she'll be prepared: "I will definitely take mace or a retractable baton or something similar!" She says she has already had 9 shots including tetanus and rabies vaccines since the attack. She has 3 more rounds to go to make sure she doesn't get sick.
[byline: Laura Taylor]
 Montana: bat, human exposure
Date: Fri 23 Aug 2019
Source: ABC Fox Mountain [edited]
Glacier Park says a resident is undergoing a series of rabies vaccinations after being scratched by a rabid bat in the St Mary area. The park says it's the 1st known case of a rabid bat in Glacier this year .
Staff want to remind visitors if you come into physical contact with a bat or a skunk, it's important to safely capture the animal so it can be tested for rabies. People who may have been exposed to rabies should undergo preventative vaccinations, because there is no known cure for rabies once it's contracted. [I wonder if it is practical to expect a bitten, shaken hiker or tourist to capture a bat or skunk. I think calling for help (hopefully a cell phone can reach the ranger station) or calling out to other people should take priority. -Mod.TG]
Do not feed or handle wild animals, especially bats, even if they are dead. Tell kids to find an adult if they see or find a bat.
Wildlife biologists say there's no reason to be unduly afraid of bats, because less than 1% of bats have rabies, and they are vital to maintaining ecosystems and reducing mosquitoes. But it's smart to stay a healthy distance away from wild animals.
>From the Glacier press release:
Bat tests positive for rabies in Glacier National Park
Public urged to learn more about rabies prevention
Last Thursday [15 Aug 2019], Glacier County Health Department confirmed that a bat scratched a park resident in the St. Mary area was rabid. The person is currently undergoing a series of rabies vaccinations. This was the 1st known case of a rabid bat in Glacier National Park this year .
Typically, rabies does not cause large outbreaks in bat colonies and tends to be limited to a small number of individuals. Less than 1% of bats have rabies.
Glacier National Park joins partner county health agencies and National Park Service wildlife veterinarians in urging people to become aware of rabies risks in bats and skunks.
If a bat or skunk has had human contact, it's vital to safely capture the animal and submit it for rabies testing. Without testing, it is impossible to tell if the animal is carrying rabies, and the exposed person should undergo a preventative series of rabies vaccinations for humans. There is no cure for rabies once a human contracts [the disease]. [Please see moderator's note above regarding having a park ranger capture the creature with a net or other means. - Mod.TG]
People can take additional precautions by properly screening homes and seasonal cabins. Historic buildings with gaps, outbuildings, and other structures that are routinely left open are particularly susceptible to bats.
"Rabies is not something that most people think about on a regular basis," said Glacier National Park superintendent Jeff Mow. "However, if you come into physical contact with a bat, it's important to know there are resources available to you and testing procedures you must follow to protect your health and that of your family."
While bats do pose a small rabies risk in humans, they also play an important role in area ecosystems, eating a number of nighttime insects, including agricultural pests.
Living sustainably alongside bats can often be accomplished with the right tools and timing of mitigation measures. Most of the bat roosts in the St Mary park area are maternity roosts and due to time of year, pups still cannot fly. Therefore, the park will seal any indoor roost spaces it discovers after bats have left in September.
This is a vulnerable population at a sensitive time of year. Little brown bats have been significantly impacted by white-nose syndrome in other parts of the country. Since bats typically have only one pup per year, survival of the pup is important for sustaining the population. White-nose syndrome is not yet in Montana, but it continues to spread across the country.
Public health and human safety is always the priority. The park also strives to protect the health of bats.
Taking responsible measures to exclude bats from buildings whenever possible and seeking testing and/or treatment following an exposure are important steps to take when living alongside this species. Bat exclusion is an ongoing task in park buildings, many of which are older and are vacant for a significant portion of the year.
People exposed to a bat or skunk should be aware of testing protocols and call their county health department immediately for specific instructions. Glacier County Health Department can be reached at 406-873-2924. Flathead City-County Health Department can be reached at 406-751-8101. [If the person is visiting in the area, then it seems logical they could call the nearest county health and or medical facility. - Mod.TG]
In order to test a bat or a skunk for rabies, the brain/head must be intact and must be refrigerated until sent for testing (do not freeze). [Even then, it must be sent to the testing facility properly packaged, and on ice. Delays or incorrect packaging may render the sample worthless. - Mod.TG]
The public should always follow common rabies prevention tips:
- Do not feed or handle wild animals, especially bats. Teach children never to touch wild animals or handle bats, even dead ones. Ask children to tell an adult if they see or find a bat.
- Vaccinate your dogs and cats against rabies. Cats are particularly susceptible to rabies exposure due to a higher risk of interaction with wild animals. [Horses and cattle should also be vaccinated against rabies. - Mod.TG]
- Bat-proof your house. Place screens on all windows, doors, and chimneys to prevent bats from entering.
- Prevent bats from roosting in attics or buildings by covering outside entry points. However, to avoid trapping any young bats who will die or try to make their way into your rooms, seal the openings permanently after August or in the fall after the bats have left for the season.
- Watch for abnormal wild animal behavior. Most wild animals avoid humans, and seeing skunks and bats during the daytime is rare. If you see an animal acting strangely, leave it alone and contact law enforcement or animal control if you think it may pose a danger.
[byline: Kate Whittle]
[Anytime you are bitten, especially by an unknown animal or an animal hat is unprovoked, cleaning the wound(s) with soap and water and getting medical attention is imperative.
Postexposure prophylaxis (PEP) consists of a dose of human rabies immune globulin (HRIG) and rabies vaccine given on the day of the rabies exposure, and then a dose of vaccine given again on days 3, 7, and 14. For people who have never been vaccinated against rabies previously, postexposure prophylaxis (PEP) should always include administration of both HRIG and rabies vaccine. The combination of HRIG and vaccine is recommended for both bite and non-bite exposures, regardless of the interval between exposure and initiation of treatment.
People who have been previously vaccinated or are receiving preexposure vaccination for rabies should receive only vaccine.
Adverse reactions to rabies vaccine and immune globulin are not common. Newer vaccines in use today cause fewer adverse reactions than previously available vaccines. Mild, local reactions to the rabies vaccine, such as pain, redness, swelling, or itching at the injection site, have been reported. Rarely, symptoms such as headache, nausea, abdominal pain, muscle aches, and dizziness have been reported. Local pain and low-grade fever may follow injection of rabies immune globulin.
The vaccine should be given at recommended intervals for best results. Talk to your doctor or state or local public health officials if you will not be able to have your shots at the recommended interval. Rabies prevention is a serious matter and changes should not be made in the schedule of doses. Patient-assistance programs that provide medications to uninsured or underinsured patients are available for
rabies vaccine and immune globulin.
People cannot transmit rabies to other people unless they themselves are sick with rabies. PEP will protect you from developing rabies, and therefore you cannot expose other people to rabies. You can continue to participate in your normal activities.
Sadly, rabies PEP is, for the moment, unexplainably expensive both in terms of the cost of the vaccine and the services to administer it. Getting a tetanus shot may also be a good idea. Keep your tetanus shot up to date. - Mod.TG
Maine, United States: <http://healthmap.org/promed/p/222>
Virginia, United States: <http://healthmap.org/promed/p/247>
Montana, United States: <http://healthmap.org/promed/p/228>]
Rabies - Americas (41): USA (TN, SC, FL, TX) dog, cat, fox, raccoon,
human exp. http://promedmail.org/post/20190810.6615389
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