CHESAPEAKE, Va. – A rabid cat was captured in Chesapeake after aggressively chasing and biting at least one person.
The incident occurred on August 23 in the industrial park near the 900 block of Executive Court, according to the Chesapeake Health Department.
The cat was captured and is no longer a threat.
However, there are numerous feral cats and animals in the area that may also have been exposed.
If you or anyone you know has been bitten or scratched by any cat or animal in this area, please call the Chesapeake Health Department at (757) 382-8672 or the Chesapeake Animal Control at (757) 382-8080 as soon as possible.
The Chesapeake Health Department advises not to approach wild or stray animals and if possible be aware of your pets and potential exposure to wildlife. Exposure of humans to rabies occurs when the saliva of an infected animal enters the body through an open wound or mucous membrane, such as with an animal bite or scratch. An animal exposure is a serious medical event, for which prompt evaluation and complete treatment is critical. Rabies is highly preventable if the vaccine is given early and as recommended. Unfortunately, without preventive treatment, by the time someone develops symptoms of rabies, there is no cure and the disease is fatal in almost 100% of cases. The disease is also fatal in infected domestic dogs and cats that have not been vaccinated.
The Health Department strongly emphasizes the following recommendations for Chesapeake residents to take in protecting their families and their pets from rabies:
- Seek medical treatment promptly for any animal bite to ensure appropriate and timely evaluation and treatment. All animal exposures must be taken seriously.
- If you or your pets have been in contact with an animal that might be rabid, contact the Chesapeake Health Department at (757) 382-8672 or Chesapeake Animal Control at (757) 382-8080.
- Do not approach wild or stray animals, especially raccoons, bats, foxes, skunks, cats and dogs.
- Ensure all pet dogs, cats and ferrets have current rabies vaccinations. Please consult your veterinarian or the Chesapeake Health Department if you have any questions about pet vaccinations.
- Confine your pets to your property.
- Securely seal garbage containers with lids.
- State law requires all dogs and cats over the age of four months to be vaccinated against rabies.