Rabies Prevention Guidelines

The Middlesex County Office of Health Services is advising residents to follow these guidelines in order to prevent rabies from being transmitted to themselves or their pets:

1. Immediately report a bite from a wild or domestic animal to your local health department. Wash animal bite wounds thoroughly with soap and water as soon as possible after the bite. Contamination of open cuts or scratches with saliva of potentially rabid animals should also be washed off immediately. Consult a physician as soon as possible.
2. Immediately report any wild animal showing signs of unusual behavior.

Signs of unusual animal behavior could be that the animal may: 

  • *move slowly
  • *may act as if it is tame
  • *appear sick
  • *have problems swallowing
  • *have an increase of saliva
  • *have increased drooling
  • *act aggressive
  • *have difficulty moving
  • *have paralysis
  • *bite at everything if excited
  • *Residents should avoid any contact with the animal and call your local animal control officer or local police department.

3. Be sure that all family pets are up to date on their rabies vaccination. If unsure please call your veterinarian. Call your local health department for free rabies vaccination clinic availability.
4. Animal proof your home and yard. Make sure all garbage containers have tight fitting lids, do not leave pet food or water outside, do not allow rainwater to collect in outdoor containers or equipment and keep yard free of garbage and debris.
5. Do not feed or handle wild animals.
6. Avoid contact with stray animals or pets other than your own.
7. Try to prevent your pets from coming into contact with wild animals.
8. Screen off vents to attics and other areas that could provide shelter for bats.