Skunk tests positive for rabies in Abilene


ABILENE, Texas - Several Abilene residents got the notice that a skunk in their area tested positive for rabies last week.

The city of Abilene says the Texas Department of State Health Services confirmed the test result for a skunk found near the 2900 block of Palm Street.

City officials say the individuals and animals with possible exposure have been identified and informed of the issue.

Rabies is a deadly virus that can be spread through the saliva of infected animals. Treatment involves a series of shots.

"The discovery of one rabid skunk is not cause for alarm, but it highlights the importance of making sure that our pets are current on their rabies vaccine," said Mirenda Walden, the city of Abilene's Animal Services Director, in a news release.

Abilene Animal Services gave the following tips about rabies:

· Do not feed wild animals - this just brings them closer to your family.

· Teach children to stay away from wild or deceased animals.

· Do not allow pets to roam freely, as free-roaming increases their chance of exposure without your knowledge.

· Keep your pet's rabies vaccination current.

· Immediately contact a veterinarian if your pet is bitten or scratched by a wild animal.

· People with possible rabies exposure should consult with a physician without delay.

· Report all animal bites to animal control authorities; the biting animal must be quarantined or tested for rabies.