ACHD Issues Rabies Precautions for Residents in Liberty Borough

July 7, 2017

Contact: Melissa Wade
Public Health Information Officer
412-578-8312 (office)
412-339-7995 (cell)

PITTSBURGH – The Allegheny County Health Department (ACHD) is advising residents of Liberty Borough of a rabid cat that was found in the area and had been in an altercation with a dog. The incident took place in the 3100 block of Valley Ridge Road. Anyone in that area who has had exposure to a feral cat should contact the ACHD. Contact with stray animals should be avoided. Residents should have their pets vaccinated, and watch for unusual behavior.

“Well-intentioned efforts by individuals sometime can result in unnecessary exposure to pathogens like the rabies virus,” said Health Department Director, Dr. Karen Hacker. “We strongly advise everyone to stay away from wild or stray animals, and particularly suggest that Liberty Borough residents especially in the area where the rabid cat was remain alert. If animals appear to be acting strange or become threatening, call your local animal control service, the police or the Pennsylvania Game Commission.”

Any individual who is bitten, scratched or otherwise exposed to saliva from a stray or any other animal, should immediately cleanse the contact area with soap and water, seek emergency medical treatment and call ACHD at 412-687-ACHD (2243) to report the incident.

Rabies is a virus transmitted by an animal bite or scratch. It is almost always fatal when exposures are left untreated. The rabies vaccine is highly effective when given promptly after an exposure, but is still a major expense and inconvenience that can be avoided. The best prevention is to avoid stray animals, wild animals or those acting strangely as they can be potentially rabid.

So far this year, a total of seven rabid animals have been reported in Allegheny County: one (1) cat, three (3) bats and three (3) raccoons.

# # #

Karen Hacker, MD, MPH, Director
Allegheny County Health Department – Public Information Office
542 Fourth Avenue │ Pittsburgh, PA 15219
Phone: 412-687-ACHD (2243) │ Fax: 412-578-8325

The original press release can be found at: 07-07-17 – Health Department Issues Rabies Precautions for Residents in Liberty Borough

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