Dog exposes 2 Winnsboro-area adults to rabies | Health
WINNSBORO, SC (WIS) - The South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control says two adults in the Winnsboro area have been exposed to rabies.
Health officials say they are undergoing post-exposure treatments. They were exposed to a dog that tested positive for rabies. This animal is the second to test positive this year from Fairfield County.
"To reduce the risk of getting rabies, we recommend that people avoid wild animals acting tame and tame animals acting wild," said Sue Ferguson of DHEC's Bureau of Environmental Health Services.
About 275 South Carolinians must undergo preventive treatment for rabies every year, with most exposures coming from bites or scratches by a rabid or suspected rabid animal. Wild animals carry the disease most often, but domestic pets can contract rabies.
State law requires pet owners to have their pets regularly vaccinated against the disease.
”This is the second dog from S.C. with rabies in less than a month, which is why vaccination is so important,” said Ferguson. ”Three cats have also been diagnosed with rabies this year.”
"If you think you have been exposed to the rabies virus through a bite, scratch or the saliva of a possibly infected animal, immediately wash the affected area with plenty of soap and water," Ferguson said. "Then be sure to get medical attention and report the incident to DHEC."
There were 137 confirmed cases of animal rabies during 2012 in South Carolina. There have been 102 confirmed cases in animals statewide this year. This animal is the second to test positive this year from Fairfield County.
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