Tuesday, May 1, 2007

Miami-Dade Rabies Alert

A rabid bat has prompted an alert in Miami-Dade County. Animal Services says a bat attacked a dog in northwest Miami-Dade, but the dog's owner killed the bat before it bit the dog. The bat tested positive for rabies.

The county's Animal Services Department is urging all residents make sure their pet's vaccines are up-to-date. "The rabies virus is spread when an infected animal bites another animal or person," said Dr. Sara Pizano, Miami-Dade County Animal Services Director. "Vaccinating against rabies is the best way to protect pets and people from this deadly disease."

Miami Dade County requires all pets to be vaccinated against the rabies virus using either a one or three year vaccine. Animal Services offers rabies vaccinations Monday through Friday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Saturday and Sunday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the main shelter located at 7401 NW 74th Street.

The Center for Disease Control and Prevention recommends keeping pets and children away from wild animals such as raccoons, foxes and opossums that could be carrying the virus.

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