raccoonTwo Woodstock residents are undergoing post-exposure rabies treatment after each may have come into contact with rabies during separate incidents last week.

Glen Gordy of Cherokee County Environmental Health stated that in the first incident, a person was feeding bread to geese in Dupree Park on October 30 at about 3 p.m. when two stray dogs approached and started fighting over the bread. The person tried to stop the fight and was bitten on the hand. The dogs then ran off and have not been seen since.

The second incident occurred on November 1 while a dog sitter was tending a Chihuahua at a residence on Plantation Trace in Woodstock. At approximately 7:30 p.m., a raccoon attacked the dog and the sitter beat the raccoon to death with a shoe. The sitter was bitten on the finger during the skirmish but was unsure as to which animal inflicted the wound. The raccoon was immediately sent to the state lab for rabies testing, and the positive results were received by local officials on November 3.

Since the residents were possibly exposed to rabies in these incidents, both began post exposure treatment, which consists of one shot of rabies immune globulin and four shots of rabies vaccine over a two-week period.

The Chihuahua that had been attacked by the raccoon was current on its rabies vaccination; therefore, the only treatment required was a rabies booster shot and a 45-day quarantine.

Health officials continue to urge residents to protect against rabies by maintaining rabies vaccinations in their pets and by never handling unfamiliar animals.

For more information about rabies and its prevention, please call the Cherokee County Environmental Health Office at (770) 479-0444. General information about rabies can be found on the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) website at www.cdc.gov.

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