DHEC: Raccoon exposes woman to rabies | Environment
A Lee County woman is receiving post-exposure treatments after she was bitten by a raccoon who tested positive for rabies, the S.C. Department of Health and Environmental Control reported Monday.
"To reduce the risk of getting rabies, we recommend that people avoid wild animals acting tame and tame animals acting wild," Ferguson said. "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.”
Ferguson said state law requires pet owners to have their pets regularly vaccinated against the disease.
“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,” she said. “Then be sure to get medical attention and report the incident to DHEC.”
There were 107 confirmed cases of animal rabies during 2011 in South Carolina. There have been 131 confirmed cases in animals statewide this year.