Puppy may have exposed family to rabies - FOX Carolina 21

Puppy may have exposed family to rabies

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WARE SHOALS, SC (FOX Carolina) -

Two adults and two children in the Ware Shoals area of Laurens County are being treated for rabies, according to the S.C. Department of Health and Environmental Control.

Health officials said they may have been exposed to rabies by a puppy that tested positive for the disease.

"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 as well."

Ferguson said South Carolina requires pet owners to have their pets over 12 weeks old vaccinated against the disease each year.

"This unvaccinated puppy was bitten on the nose by a suspect rabid skunk and died from rabies 10 days later," Ferguson said.

The infected puppy was the first domestic pet and the sixth animal to test positive this year from Laurens County.

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