The Madison County Health Department announced a feral cat collected in Sullivan tested positive for rabies. This is the first positive rabies of 2019. Two individuals were bitten by the feral cat and are undergoing rabies post-exposure treatment.

“Residents should be on alert and play it safe and avoid contact with wild animals and pets you don’t know,” said Environmental Health Director Geoffrey Snyder.

Teach children to stay safe around animals.

  • Be careful of pets that you do not know. If you see a stray dog or cat, don´t pet it.
  • Never feed or approach a wild animal.
  • Supervise children while interacting with animals.

Steps to take after contact with animals:

  1. Wash your hands thoroughly with soap and water.
  2. Immediately wash well any scratches or bites from an animal with soap and water. If you have a wound, see a doctor for medical attention.
  3. Report any incidents of animal scratches or bites to the Madison County Health Department.

The rabies virus spreads through saliva or animal drool. Rabies is not spread by blood, urine, feces or just by petting an animal with rabies. If an animal has rabies and bites you or licks its claws before it scratches you, you could be exposed to the rabies virus.

For more information about rabies, submitting an animal for rabies testing or to find upcoming rabies vaccination clinics for your pet, visit Madison County Health Department online at or call 315.366.2526.

By martha

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