Two kittens living on a ranch in Blue Ridge tested positive for rabies by the Texas Department of State Health Services laboratory.
The kittens were bitten by a rabid skunk on the property. All three animals have died from the infection. All other domestic animals on the ranch, including cats, dogs, goats and cattle, are confined and under observation. All humans who had contact with the infected kittens have been identified and are being contacted to be treated for their exposure to the virus.
Rabies is a viral illness that can be transmitted through an infected animal’s saliva. Infected animals can transmit the rabies virus prior to the onset of symptoms. The illness can be prevented with treatment before symptoms begin. However, once a person has symptoms, the disease is almost always fatal if left untreated. Animal contact, such as bites or scratches or contact with saliva, may lead to exposure to rabies. Humans who have been bitten or scratched by a rabid animal must have a series of shots to prevent becoming infected with rabies.
City of Allen ordinances state all dogs and cats four months of age or older are required to be vaccinated for rabies. Animals must receive a booster within twelve months of their first vaccination. Every animal must be re-vaccinated against rabies at least once every three years. A licensed veterinarian must do the rabies vaccination. A rabies vaccination certificate and rabies tag will be issued after the vaccination. The tag should immediately be placed on the animal's collar.
Any person aware of an animal bite or scratch to a human will report the incident to Allen Animal Control within 24 hours of the incident. All dogs and cats that bite or scratch a human must be quarantined for ten days, regardless of whether they are vaccinated for rabies or not. The biting animal may be quarantined at various locations depending on the bite, including a veterinarian's office, the Allen Animal Shelter, or the animal's home.
To report an animal bite, contact Allen Animal Control at 214.509.4378.