ORLANDO, Fla. – A rabies alert has been issued in East Orlando after two raccoons in the area recently tested positive for the deadly virus, according to the Florida Department of Health in Orange County.
The alert will remain active for 60 days as a warning to residents that rabies is active and present in the wildlife population.
The center of the rabies alert is at Dean Road and includes the following boundaries in Orange County: north of University Boulevard, Semoran Boulevard, Lake Pickett Road and Hancock Lone Palm Road and Curry Ford Road.
Anyone who is bitten or scratched by a wild animal should seek medical attention immediately and report the incident to Orange County Animal Services at 407-254-9150.
“An animal with rabies could infect domestic animals that have not been vaccinated against rabies. All domestic animals should be vaccinated against rabies and all wildlife contact should be avoided, particularly raccoons, bats, foxes, skunks, otters, bobcats, and coyotes,” a news release read. “Rabies is a disease of the nervous system and is fatal to warm blooded animals and humans.”
Health officials provided the following advice:
- All pets should have current rabies immunizations.
- Secure outside garbage in covered containers to avoid attracting wild animals.
- Do not leave pet food outside. This also attracts other animals.
- Avoid contact with all wildlife, especially feral cats, raccoons, bats and foxes.
- If bitten or scratched by a suspected rabid animal, wash the wound immediately with soap and water, seek medical attention and promptly report the incident to Orange County Animal Services.
- Rabies is preventable when treatment is provided in a timely manner.
Visit the Department of Health’s website or the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s website for more information about rabies.