Portsmouth, Va. – Health officials in Portsmouth confirmed that a fox in the city tested positive for rabies.
The Portsmouth Department of Public Health did not go into details about how they came to find the rabid fox but did provide steps to prevent families and pets from being exposed to rabies.
Eliminate outdoor food sources around the home:
A. Do not feed stray dogs or cats, or any wild animal.
B. Garbage containers should be securely sealed with lids.
C. After feeding pets, bring leftover food inside or dispose of it properly.
D. Bird food should be placed in a bird feeder inaccessible to wild animals.
E. Food stored in outbuildings (barns, open garages) should be inaccessible to animals.
Avoid contact between yourself (or your pets) and wild animals or stray dogs and cats:
A. Report any stray animals to the Portsmouth Bureau of Animal Control at 393-8430 and avoid contact with this animal. If contact occurs between any wild animal and you or your pet, contact the Portsmouth Department of Public Health at 393-8585 ext. 8585.
It is imperative that you receive medical treatment as soon as possible. Call your
veterinarian to examine your pet for wounds and administer a booster rabies shot.
B. Keep dogs and cats confined to your property. Animals that are allowed to roam are more prone to come into contact with wild animals such as foxes and raccoons.
*Vaccinating all pets against rabies is a law in Portsmouth.