Two wild animals with rabies have been captured in Warren County, the Lord Fairfax Health District announced on Tuesday.
A fox found off Boyd’s Mill Lane near Browntown, and a raccoon recovered in the Gloucester Road/Richmond Road region in Front Royal were involved in separate attacks with dogs on May 27, the district’s news release states.
The raccoon and the fox were later discovered to have rabies.
“Both of these animals have now expired but any people or domestic animals that came in contact with either of these animals at any time between May 17 and 30 should receive a medical evaluation immediately,” Health Director Dr. Colin Greene states in the release.
The Health District, which is part of the Virginia Department of Health, advises people to refrain from approaching or feeding wild or feral animals, get their pets vaccinated, report any unusual or concerning behavior by wild or domestic animals to the Health Department or an animal control officer, and seek medical attention if bitten or licked by an animal that might have rabies.
“If the attack is from a cat, dog or ferret, try to identify or capture it if possible,” the Health District release states. “Rabies can be ruled out if these animals are observed to remain healthy for ten days.”
The department requests residents cooperate with health professionals calling for information.
“We do not take people’s pets from them,” the department states. “We only want to keep track of them so we can stop the spread of rabies.”
Warren County has reported three rabies cases since mid-April. Nearby Shenandoah County has reported four during that time, and Frederick County has had one.
Though rabies isn’t especially common in Virginia, the department’s local district of Warren, Clarke, Page, Frederick, Shenandoah and the city of Winchester had 17 reported cases of rabies in 2017 and 29 in 2018. So far this year, the district has reported at least 13.
Call the Frederick/Winchester Health Department at 540-722-3470 for information. Visit the Virginia Department of Health at www.vdh.virginia.gov/environmental-epidemiology/rabies-control and the health district at www.vdh.virginia.gov/lord-fairfax.