Date: Fri 12 May 2023
Source: KMOV4 [edited]



First confirmed case of rabies in St. Charles County since 2020


A bat found in Lake Saint Louis has tested positive for the rabies virus. This is the 1st case of rabies in St. Charles County since 2020 and the 7th case for Missouri this year [2023].

According to Department of Public Health Acting Director Sara Evers, the bat was discovered in an area home. The homeowner was not bitten, but county public health nurses are assessing for potential exposure to determine if treatment is needed.

"Rabies is a dangerous virus found in the saliva of mammals infecting the nervous system," said Evers. "The discovery of this infected animal serves as a reminder annual vaccination is the best way to prevent rabies infection in pets and their owners and is required for all pets by St. Charles County Animal Control Ordinance Section 205.110. Rabies illness requires mandatory preventative actions and extensive treatment, so it is important people and their pets avoid contact with live or dead wild or stray animals."

Bats and skunks commonly spread rabies in Missouri. Humans and pets can become exposed to rabies through bites or scratches by infected animals.

Veterinarians can provide rabies vaccination and the accompanying rabies registration, which must be displayed on the pet's collar. Individuals needing financial assistance to obtain the vaccination and registration tag can contact the St. Charles County Pet Adoption Center.

Residents concerned about potentially rabid animals on their property should call St. Charles County Animal Control for domesticated animals or the Missouri Department of Conservation's St. Charles County regional office for wild animals.

The Missouri Department of Health & Senior Services collects data on rabies reports on a monthly basis, which can be found at https://www.kmov.com/2023/05/12/first-confirmed-case-rabies-st-charles-county-since-2020.
[Byline Rheanna Wachter]


Communicated by:

[Updates such as this remind us there is an intersection between bats, pets and people. Be cautious of bats whether inside or outside. Bats can bite and you may not know it, especially if you were sleeping. If you wake and there is a bat in the dwelling it is highly likely you were bitten and seeking treatment is the wise move. Once clinical signs appear, there is no treatment. Death is probable.

Regardless of domestic or wild animals, large or small domestic animals, be cautious and seek medical treatment if scratched or bitten.

Please note some areas are indicating an increase in animals at this time year with rabies. Spring and animal mating seasons may cause more wide spread exposure. While wildlife is fascinating, let them be wild and keep a safe distance. - Mod.TG

ProMED map:
Missouri, United States: https://promedmail.org/promed-post?place=8710053,227]

See Also

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