HAE

The Larimer County Department of Health and Environment (LCDHE) has learned that a cat recently tested positive for rabies in Fort Collins. This cat was found near the area of Laurel and Mathews street, just east of Colorado State University. The cat was a solid grey younger cat, and people potentially might have been in contact with it in the nearby area.

If you think you might have touched or fed a grey cat matching this description between July 23 and August 7, you might need preventive treatment to make sure you don’t contract rabies. If you had this type of contact, we recommend that you contact your health care provider or call Larimer County Department of Health and Environment at 970-646-1756.

Dr. Chris-Nevin Woods, Medical Director for Larimer County Department of Health and Environment says, “Rabies is a very serious, almost always fatal virus. It is important that anyone who might have touched this cat notify their health care provider or public health to assess risk and any need for treatment.”

Rabies is spread primarily by saliva through the bite of a rabid animal. Once symptoms of rabies infection appear, there is no cure and the infection is fatal. People that have been exposed to rabies can receive medication treatment to prevent illness.

In Larimer County, positive rabies is most often found in skunks and bats but does occasionally cross into domestic animals. So far this year Larimer County has had 47 animals test positive for rabies, the highest confirmed rabies infection across the state of Colorado.

LCDHE reminds pet owners to keep their animals up-to-date on rabies vaccinations to prevent lengthy and costly quarantines—or even euthanasia—if they have an encounter with a rabid animal.  Livestock owners should check with their veterinarians about rabies vaccinations for their horses, cattle, and other livestock.

Ways to protect you and your family:

  • Do not feed or touch wildlife or unknown/stray animals.
  • Teach children to observe wildlife from a distance and to notify an adult if there is a wild animal in the area or if they are bitten or scratched.
  • Eliminate food sources for wild animals by not feeding pets outdoors, closing pet doors especially at night, and tightly closing garbage cans and feed bins.
  • Ensure that your pets, horses, and livestock are up-to-date on their rabies vaccinations.

For the latest information on rabies in Larimer County, visit http://www.larimer.org/rabies.

Published on: 
Friday, August 9, 2019 - 5:06pm

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