PUEBLO, Colo. - The Pueblo City-County Health Department is reporting its first rabid skunk of 2014.
The skunk was found on 23rd Lane between Hillside Road and Iris Road.
"The skunk was seen in a yard during daylight hours charging pets. It is unusual for skunks to be out during the day. Fortunately, there was no human contact with the skunk. Also, pets in the location where the skunk was located were previously vaccinated, yet not all up-to-date on their rabies vaccines," said Dr. Christine Nevin-Woods, public health director at the Pueblo City-County Health Department. She added, "If you see a skunk out in the middle of the day it is important to call and report the skunk to Pueblo Animal Services 544-3005."
The health department says it's important to make sure your animals have up-to-date rabies vaccinations.
"Skunks with rabies are a risk to pets and humans. It is important to talk to your children about not feeding or playing with wild animals," explained Dr. Nevin-Woods.
Rabies is most commonly found in bats, but also affects animals like foxes and raccoons.
Rabies safety tips:
- Ensure that dogs, cats and ferrets are vaccinated properly against rabies by a licensed veterinarian.
- Discuss vaccinating horses and other livestock with your veterinarian. If you believe your animal has been exposed to rabies, or possibly bitten by a rabid animal, immediately contact your veterinarian.
- Do not feed wild animals or allow your pets around them. Teach children to stay away from wild mammals. Do not keep pet food outside as that may attract wild animals.
- Protect all pets, particularly animals too young to be vaccinated, from contact with wild animals. Puppies and kittens should be vaccinated for rabies as early as three months old.
- Contact your veterinarian if your dog or cat is bitten or scratched by wild animals, such as skunks, bats, foxes or raccoons.
- Take steps to bat proof your home. www.cdc.gov/rabies/bats/management/index.html
- If you or a family member has been bitten by a wild animal or a domestic animal, contact your physician and Pueblo Animal Services at 719-544-3005 immediately.