The Herald Banner, Greenville, TX

January 11, 2013

Rabid skunk found locally

Courtesy: City of Greenville
Herald-Banner Staff

GREENVILLE — On January 8, 2013, the Greenville Animal Control Division received a Skunk in the 3400 block of Briscoe Street.

The animal was shipped for testing. Test results showed the skunk tested positive for rabies. This is the first case of rabies in Hunt County and the first in the City of Greenville this year.

In an effort to inform the citizens of Greenville of this, we are issuing the following information:

— We are encouraging persons living in the area to immediately have their animals vaccinated against rabies by a licensed Veterinarian. By law, the rabies vaccination is required every year, when given the one year vaccine and every three years, when given the three year vaccine.

— Restrain your pets and do not allow them to roam free, this is also prohibited by the City of Greenville’s Code of Ordinances. 

— Avoid contact with wild animals, do not try to hand feed them and do not keep them as pets.

 — Do not touch any sick or injured animals.  Instead call the City of Greenville Animal Control Division. Signs of rabies include, a change in behavior, wild animals that seem friendly or tame, wild animals which are not normally seen in the day time hours, animals that have a hard time walking, eating, or drinking, and animals that bite or scratch an old wound until it bleeds.

What is rabies?

Rabies is a virus of the central nervous system. It can be transmitted by the bite of a rabid animal, or through the saliva of a rabid animal being introduced into a fresh scratch or similar skin break. Rabies can incubate from 14 days to 18 months, depending on the type of animal, site of wound, amount of virus, and the age of the victim. The average incubation period is 3 to 8 weeks.

There are two clinical signs of rabies, ‘furious’ and ‘dumb’ rabies. If the animal has the furious type of rabies it will display the usual ‘mad dog’ behavior, irritable, snapping and biting at real or imaginary objects, and can be extremely vicious and violent. Paralysis sets in shortly, usually affecting the hind legs first, then in four to seven days the animal will die.

If the animal displays the dumb type of rabies, the prominent symptoms are drowsiness, paralysis of the lower jaw, the animal will snap at movement and are insensitive to pain. They can act as if something is lodged in their throat, prompting owners to try and remove the object and become exposed to rabies. They will usually die three to ten days after the first symptoms.

Please report any animal bite, or any possible rabies suspect to the Greenville Animal Control, at 5800 Joe Ramsey Blvd., 903-457-2990. An officer is on duty Monday – Friday from 8 am to 5 pm. After hours calls can be directed to the City of Greenville Police Department’s non-emergency number, 903- 457-2900.

The following Veterinarian clinics are available to administer the rabies vaccination to your pets, please call them for prices and hours.

GREENVILLE AREA VETERINARY SERVICES:

Animal Clinic 4527 Stonewall 455-6317

Animal Medical Center 4307 Ridgecrest 454-9191

Crossroads Veterinary Clinic 8414 Wesley 454-1563

Greenville Animal Hospital I-30 at Lamar St. 455-8588

Cause for Paws 4400 Moulton Suite I 454-7387

Turtle Creek Vet. Med. Center 5900 Jack Finney Blvd. 454-6222