A raccoon infected with the rabies virus was found in Canfield.
A news release from the Mahoning County District Board of Health said the infected animal was found in the vicinity of Colonial Drive.
A laboratory report confirmed the diagnosis.
Although there were no known exposures to animals or humans in this case, the board lists the following recommendations to help protect residents from the disease:
- Do not feed, touch or adopt wild animals and be cautious around stray cats and dogs.
- Teach children to leave wildlife alone and be sure that your child knows to tell you if an animal bites or scratches them.
- Have your pet cats, dogs, and ferrets vaccinated for rabies and keep their vaccinations current.
- Keep trash can lids secure. Open containers can attract wildlife.
- Feed pets indoors. Never leave food outdoors that can attract wildlife.
- Report any bite incidents to your local health department and call your doctor for medical advice.
Rabies is a fatal and a serious public health threat, the release said. All mammals, such as raccoons, skunks, foxes and bats, are believed susceptible to the disease. Rabies is transmitted when the virus is introduced into bite wounds, open cuts, or on mucous membranes from saliva.
If you find a dead raccoon, skunk, or fox that is not decayed or involved in a pet or human exposure, please contact your local health department.
If found in the city of Youngstown, please contact the Youngstown City Health District at (330) 743 – 3333. If found in all other Mahoning County communities, contact the Mahoning County District Board of Health at (330) 270 – 2855.