Health officials are urging residents to be aware of the signs of rabies after a person was potentially exposed to the fatal disease in the Town of Verona.

A New York resident is undergoing treatment after encountering a rabid fox last week. Not much is known about the interaction, but the fox was sent to the New York State Department of Health Wadsworth Center for testing on the 24th, where it tested positive for the virus.

Scott Barbour, Getty Images
Scott Barbour, Getty Images

The Oneida County Health Department is warning residents to stay away from wild animals, as this comes as numerous cases of rabies were reported in the area.

Recently, rabies managed to infect livestock and a cow exposed 2 individuals to the fatal disease.

Read More: Rabid Cow Exposes Two People to Rabies in Upstate New York

The incident came shortly after a rabid fox attacked four people in Rome. The frenzied animal was dispatched by a resident.

Read More: Fox That Attacked Multiple People in Rome Confirmed Rabid

The Oneida County Health Department also confirmed a raccoon tested positive for rabies in Holland Patent and a skunk was infected with the disease in Lichfield.

Amid this apparent spike in confirmed cases in various animal species, officials are urging pet owners to make sure their pets are up to date on their rabies vaccinations and for everyone to recognize the signs of a potential rabies infection.

Signs of rabies include:
• Animal acting strangely
• Animal acting mad
• Animal acting shy
• The animal may get unusually close
• Drooling or foaming from the mouth

New York State mandates all cat, ferret, and dog owners vaccinate their pet against rabies when they reach 4-months of age and then schedule booster doses when eligible.

Spemcer Platt, Getty Images
Spemcer Platt, Getty Images

Three rabies vaccination clinics are scheduled in the coming months:

  • June 3, 2024 from 5:00 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. at the Annsville Highway Garage
  • July 22, 2024 from 5 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. at the Vienna Town Garage
  • August 19, 2024 from 5 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. at the Rome Kennedy Arena

Rabies is 100% fatal in animals that have not been vaccinated against the disease.

Rabies is transmitted when an infected animal's saliva or tissue from its brain or nervous system comes in contact with another warm-blooded animal.  Signs and symptoms of the disease include drooling or foaming from the mouth, abnormal or aggressive behavior, paralysis, seizures, difficulty swallowing, and self-mutilation.

If you believe you or your pet have come in contact with a rabid animal, call the Oneida County Health Department at 315-798-5064.

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