The Florida Department of Health in Broward County has issued a rabies alert for a portion of Fort Lauderdale after a raccoon tested positive on Monday.
According to officials, all residents and visitors of Broward County are asked to be aware that rabies is present in the wild animal population, and rabies may be active in parts outside of the highlighted area, as well.
Therefore, all domestic pets are at risk if not vaccinated.
A wild animal with rabies has the potential to infect pets that have not been vaccinated against rabies. In order to avoid such risk, all pets should be routinely vaccinated for rabies once a year, and all contact with wildlife should be avoided. Particularly, avoid contact with raccoons, bats, foxes, skunks, otters, bobcats, and coyotes.
The rabies alert will be active in the area for 60 days, and includes the following boundaries:
- S.W. 9th Street to the North
- I-95 to the West
- South Fork of the New River to the East
- South Fork of the New River to the South
Rabies is a disease of the nervous system and is fatal to warm-blooded animals and humans. The only preventive measure for human exposure to rabies is rabies specific immune globulin and rabies immunization. Rabies prophylaxis started soon after the exposure will protect an exposed person from the disease.