El Paso County Public Health is urging residents to keep pets up to date on rabies vaccination after seeing an increase in reports of pets being exposed to bats or other rabid animals.
In 2015, El Paso County Public Health has investigated reports of 17 pets with exposures to animals suspected or known to have rabies. In 2014, EPCPH investigated reports of 5 pets with similar exposures.
A 6-month-old kitten has tested positive for rabies in northeast Colorado Springs. El Paso County Public Health is urging residents to protect themselves by never touching or feeding wild or stray animals, and keeping pets up to date on rabies vaccination.
El Paso County, Colo. — El Paso County Public Health reports the first rabid bat of the season. This bat was found by three children on the Southwest part of Colorado Springs, near 30th St. and Colorado Avenue. So far, two of the three children were recommended rabies post exposure prophylaxis because of the encounter. Dr. Bill Letson, El Paso County Medical Director emphasizes the importance of teaching young people not to handle or go near wildlife, even when just trying to help.
A Colorado Springs man is recovering after being attacked by a rabid fox on August 3, 2013 on Broadlake View in southwest Colorado Springs, near the Cheyenne Mountain Zoo. The resident was attempting to protect his dog when the fox attacked.
This is the second fox to test positive for rabies within 3 weeks in the same neighborhood. The first fox was found about a half-mile away on High Lake View on July 20. No one is believed to have been exposed to the first rabid fox.
The first fox to test positive for rabies this season was found near High Lake View, in Colorado Springs near the Cheyenne Mountain Zoo in El Paso County on July 20, 2013. The fox had been hit by a car and later tested for rabies. This is the first terrestrial mammal to test positive for rabies west of I-25 in El Paso County. No one is believed to have been exposed to the rabid fox.
“Rabies has been found in animals in rural areas, and now it’s into urban areas,” said Jill Law, R.N., M.H.A., Director of El Paso County Public Health.
A rabid bat fell on a woman at the Green Mountain Falls Lake on Saturday, Aug. 18. El Paso County Public Health is seeking help in finding the person.
The woman who was touched by the bat may have been exposed to rabies. Public Health is asking the individual or anyone who knows the woman to contact staff immediately at (719) 339-3230. Public Health investigators will assess the risk for rabies exposure and recommend next steps. It is very important that anyone who had contact with the bat be identified as soon as possible.
A wild bat found dead Monday afternoon near the sidewalk just outside the entrance of the Starsmore Discovery Center, 2120 S. Cheyenne Cañon Road, has tested positive for rabies.
There are no reports of people coming in contact with the bat, and the likelihood of exposure to the public is low, however El Paso County Public Health is taking precautionary steps to determine if anyone touched the bat.