Skunk found north of Guelph tests positive for rabies

Health officials say a skunk found north of Guelph in Mapleton Township has tested positive for rabies.

Wellington-Dufferin-Guelph Public Health said there was no human contact, but one person is receiving treatment after handling another animal that interacted with the infected skunk.

Public Health issued a news release on Monday, but did not say when the skunk was found.

This comes after it was announced last week that a sick skunk captured in Ayr tested positive for rabies.

The Ministry of Resources and Forestry will be dropping oral vaccine capsules in the area on Monday and Tuesday for raccoons, skunks and foxes to eat.

Residents are reminded to not touch the khaki-green coloured pods.

Khaki-green coloured baits will be dropped out of a helicopter into the area outlined on Monday and Tuesday

Public Health said it takes about two weeks for a wild animal to develop immunity to rabies after chewing one.

Medical officer of health, Dr. Nicola Mercer, said animals that carry rabies are still active into the fall and winter months.

“This is a reminder that rabies is fatal to people and animals, including pets,” she said. “If you are concerned you might have been exposed to rabies, contact your physician immediately or go to a hospital emergency department.”

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Rabies is spread by the saliva of infected animals, most commonly through a bite or a scratch, Public Health said.

Bites or scratches should be reported to the health authority by calling 1-800-265-7293.

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