DHEC: 1 being treated for rabies after scratch from stray cat in - FOX Carolina 21

DHEC: 1 being treated for rabies after scratch from stray cat in Greenville County

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(file/FOX Carolina) (file/FOX Carolina)

The Department of Health and Environmental Control (DHEC) said Wednesday that a stray cat may have exposed one person to rabies in Greenville County.

DHEC said two stray cats were fighting with one another before one scratched the victim on September 25 in an area between Simpsonville and Ware Place.

One of the stray cats was examined by DHEC’s lab and was confirmed to have rabies on October 2.

The victim is now receiving treatment for rabies exposure.

"Rabies is transmitted when saliva or neural tissue of an infected animal is introduced into the body of a person or animal," said Sandra Craig, Director, DHEC Food Protection and Rabies Prevention Division. "This usually occurs through a bite; however, saliva contact with open wounds or areas such as the eyes, nose, or mouth could also potentially transmit rabies."

"To reduce the risk of getting rabies, always give wild and stray animals their space. If you see an animal in need, avoid handling it and contact someone trained in handling the animal, such as your local animal control office or wildlife rehabilitation facility," said Craig.

Keeping pets up-to-date on their rabies vaccinations and avoiding contact with stray or wild animals are the easiest and most effective ways to protect against the fatal disease.

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