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Update: Health department searching for woman who may have been attacked by rabid cat

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Posted at 10:56 AM, Jun 13, 2013
and last updated 2013-06-14 15:37:36-04

Chesapeake, Va. – The Chesapeake Health Department has confirmed that a cat has tested positive for rabies. Now they are looking for a woman who may have been attacked by the animal.

A witness told officials that they saw a woman with dark hair get attacked by the cat in the parking lot of Burger King on S. Military Highway on June 6th. Officials would like for this woman to contact the Chesapeake Health Department on Monday for an interview.

Officials originally said two people were bitten by the stray cat.

Authorities say the cat was captured and results show the cat was positive for the rabies virus.

Anyone who may have been bitten or scratched by this cat or who has pets that may have been bitten or scratched by this cat – or knows of any other possible exposures – should immediately notify the Chesapeake Health Department or Animal Control.

Rabies can be prevented in humans with appropriate post-exposure treatment, but once symptoms develop, it is always fatal.

Incidents occurring in the City of Chesapeake should be reported to the Environmental Health Division of the Chesapeake Health Department at 757-382-8672 or Chesapeake Animal Control at 757-382-8080.

The following precautions are recommended to reduce rabies exposure:

– Be sure dogs and cats are up-to-date on vaccinations

– Keep pets confined to home and yard

– Keep yards free of food that could attract wild animals

– Do not handle, touch or take in stray or wild animals

– Warn adults and children to report any animal bites or scratches

– Report stray or unvaccinated animals to Animal Control at 757-382-8080

– Report all animal or human exposures to the Chesapeake Health Department at 757-382-8672

– For further information, please contact the Environmental Health Division of the Health Department at 757-382-8672.