Rabies case confirmed in Lakeland

LAKELAND, Fla. (WFLA)—A bat has tested positive for rabies in Lakeland, according to the Polk County Sheriff’s Office Animal Control Section.

It’s the first confirmed case of rabies in Polk County this year.

On Saturday, the animal control section was notified by a Lakeland homeowner who found their dogs nipping at and chewing on the bat in their yard.

The bat was later impounded and sent to the state lab for rabies testing.  It was confirmed the bat tested positive for rabies on Tuesday.

Both dogs had already been vaccinated and were placed on home quarantine for ten days.

“This is an important reminder to make sure your pets are up-to-date on their vaccines.” said Polk County Sheriff Grady Judd.

Residents in the area have been warned to stay away from animals acting strangely. And the sheriff’s office wants to remind individuals that bats and raccoons are among the mammals considered to be high risk species or “rabies vector species” (RVS).

If you’re worried your pet has been exposed to rabies, you should contact the PCSO Animal Control Section at 863.577.1762.




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