Health alert: Raccoon near Umatilla tests positive for rabies

Health officials issue rabies alert for Umatilla area

UMATILLA, Fla. – Health officials in Marion County say a raccoon in the Umatilla area recently tested positive for rabies.

The Department of Health in Marion County issued a health alert to inform residents about the raccoon. According to the alert, those who live south of Southeast 153rd Place, west of Southeast 265th Avenue, north of Southeast 173rd Lane and east of Southeast Highway 450, should be aware that rabies is active in their area.

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An animal with rabies could infect other animals that do not have the rabies vaccine, including domestic pets. If a pet is bitten by a wild animal it should be taken to a veterinary immediately and the county Animal Services department should also be notified.

Anyone who has been bitten or scratched by a wild animal should seek medical attention immediately and report the injury to their local health department. Treatment started soon after exposure will help protect a person from the nervous system disease that can be fatal.

For more information on rabies in Florida, including tips to prevent rabies click or tap here.