7/30/2014 - Rabies Advisement-July 29, 2014
A kitten that was submitted for rabies testing on July 25, 2014 has tested positive for rabies. The kitten was in the vicinity of Eaves Mill Rd, Route 541 and Route 70 in Medford Township. The Burlington County Health Department is concerned that some individuals may have been in contact with this kitten.
To date, the Health Department has determined that three cats, one dog and 13 individuals have been exposed. All individuals have been advised to receive treatment and the dogs and cats will be follow strict public health precautions and will be evaluated for 6 months for possible rabies. They will be responding to the following areas today to follow up and provide information to residents residing in these affected areas: Medford Mill, Medford Mews, Cherry Street, and Firehouse Lane.
The Burlington County Health Department warns homeowners who allow their pets to roam outside unattended to check the status of their pets’ last rabies shot. If it has been longer than one year, a booster shot should be given.
County Health Officer Holly Cucuzzella said, "Rabies is transmitted from infected mammals to humans usually through a bite, but scratches and saliva contact with broken skin or mucous membranes are also possible routes. Any person who had direct contact with the cat may have been exposed to rabies and should contact their doctor as soon as possible.”
The Health Department is asking for your cooperation in this matter.
1. If you have been scratched or bitten by wild life animals or stray cats or dogs in this neighborhood in the last month, please contact the Burlington County Health Department.
2. Check the status of your pets’ rabies vaccine. Have your pet receive a rabies booster if it spends time outdoors, outside of your supervision and has not received its latest rabies shot within the last 3 months.
3. Do not feed stray cats in the neighborhood. Avoid all wild animals – especially bats, skunks, foxes, cats and raccoons.
Rabies is a fatal viral disease that affects the brain. The rabies virus lives in the saliva (spit) of infected animals and is spread from a bite or when saliva from an infected animal touches broken skin, open wounds or the lining of the mouth, nose, or eyes. Rabies in certain animals—especially wildlife—is common in New Jersey.
The treatment for rabies is a prompt dose of immune globulin and a series of five rabies vaccinations over a 28-day period. Treatment should begin as soon as possible after a suspected exposure to rabies. Current vaccinations are relatively painless and given as close to the injured area as possible. If bitten, scratched or licked by a wild animal:
• Immediately wash the wounds with plenty of soap and water
• Get prompt medical attention
• Get a description of the animal
• Report the bite to your local health department
If you have any questions or concerns, please contact Frank Okyere at (609) 265-5531.
For additional information on rabies, visit: http://www.cdc.gov/rabies/.
KEEP A SAFE DISTANCE FROM STRAY AND WILD ANIMALS