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Skunk tests positive for rabies

Published 10:05pm Friday, November 30, 2012

A skunk killed by a dog in the Pioneer Road area has tested positive for rabies, according to the Suffolk Health Department.

The dog had been vaccinated for rabies and is under a 45-day observation period, health department officials stated in a press release Friday afternoon after receiving confirmation that the skunk was rabid.

“An animal exposure is a serious medical event, for which prompt evaluation and complete treatment is critical,” stated Dr. Nancy Welch, health director for the Western Tidewater Health District.

Rabies is highly preventable if a vaccine is given early and as recommended. But without preventive treatment, by the time someone develops symptoms of rabies, there is no cure and the disease is fatal in almost 100 percent of cases. The disease is also fatal in domestic dogs and cats that have not been vaccinated and have been infected.

If your pet has been in contact with an animal that might be rabid contact the Suffolk Animal Control at 514-7855 or the Suffolk Health Department at 514-4751.

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