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Bat found in Eagle tests positive for rabies

The Central District Health Department says the rabid bat, the first report in the county this season, was brought inside a home by a family cat. (File Photo)

A bat found in the Eagle area has tested positive for rabies.

The Central District Health Department says the rabid bat, the first reported in Ada County this year, was brought inside a home by a family cat. The homeowner did not come in contact with the bat, officials say.

“We have seen a recent uptick in calls and concerns from the public related to exposure to bats,” said Sarah Correll, epidemiologist with Central District Health. “It’s important that parents talk to their kids about not touching wild animals. Also, people should have their pets vaccinated to protect them in case they interact with a rabid bat or other wild animal.”

Last year, 20 bats tested positive for rabies in Idaho -- 11 of those were found within Ada County.

To protect yourself and your pets, CDHD offers the following tips:

• Do not touch a bat with your bare hands;

• If you have had an encounter with a bat, seek medical attention;

• If you come in contact with a bat, save the bat in a container without touching it and contact your district health department to arrange testing for rabies. Whenever possible, the bat should be tested to rule out an exposure to rabies;

• Always vaccinate your pets for rabies, including horses. Pets may encounter bats outdoors or in the home; and

• Bat-proof your home or cabin by plugging all holes in the siding and maintaining tight-fitting screens on windows.

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