Puppy Exposes Four People To Rabies In Laurens County - WSPA.com

Puppy Exposes Four People To Rabies In Laurens County

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Four people from Laurens County have been exposed to rabies. Four people from Laurens County have been exposed to rabies.

Four people from Laurens County have been exposed to rabies, according to officials with the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control.

Two adults and two children in the Ware Shoals area of the county are being treated after being exposed to the disease by a puppy that tested positive for the disease.  Details about the attack were not released, but officials said that the fcase is among the 92 confirmed cases in the state thus far this year. That is 45 less that in 2012.

"To reduce the risk of getting rabies, we recommend that people avoid wild animals acting tame and tame animals acting wild," said Sue Ferguson of DHEC's Bureau of Environmental Health Services. "About 275 South Carolinians must undergo preventive treatment for rabies every year, with most exposures coming from bites or scratches by a rabid or suspected rabid animal. Wild animals carry the disease most often, but domestic pets can contract rabies as well."

State laws require pet owners to have their pets regularly vaccinated against the disease. Pets can receive vaccinations as early as 12 weeks old.

"If you think you have been exposed to the rabies virus through a bite, scratch or the saliva of a possibly infected animal, immediately wash the affected area with plenty of soap and water," Ferguson said. "Then be sure to get medical attention. It is always very important to report the incident to DHEC."

World Rabies Day is Saturday and Ferguson said it is a good reminder to let pet owners know to vaccinate their pets.

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