Teen bitten by raccoon, 10th case of rabies in Polk County this year

Sheriff’s Office said the teen tried to help the raccoon

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POLK COUNTY, Fla. – The Polk County Sheriff’s Office said a 15-year-old boy was bitten by a raccoon on Thursday.

This is the 10th case of rabies confirmed in the county this year, according to the Sheriff’s Office.

The incident happened in the Providence neighborhood in Davenport.

The Sheriff’s Office said teen’s grandmother told investigators he was bitten on the hand when he saw the sick raccoon and tried to help.

The raccoon tested positive for rabies, according to investigators.

The 15-year-old is receiving medical treatment for the exposure, deputies said.

“It is imperative that children are told to avoid animals like bats, raccoons, and foxes out in the wild, and let me be clear---these animals are wildlife. If you see one in distress, leave it alone and contact Polk County Animal Control immediately.” Sheriff Grady Judd said in a news release.

Five of the rabies cases in the county this year have been bats and the five other cases have been raccoons.

In 2018, investigators said only three cases of rabies were confirmed in the county.

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