Rabies case confirmed in New Hanover County

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Submitted: Fri, 03/25/2011 - 8:39pm
Updated: Fri, 03/25/2011 - 8:41pm


NEW HANOVER COUNTY, NC (NHC) — The first rabies case of the year has been confirmed in a stray cat in New Hanover County. NHC Animal Control officers were called to the Bryan Road area of Wilmington on March 19. The cat was taken to an area veterinarian and treated for what appeared to be injuries from a dog fight.

The cat was then taken to animal control for the required confinement period, during which the cat’s condition worsened. The feline was euthanized and test results confirmed rabies.

Residents of the Bryan Road area have been notified that the cat may have been showing signs of the rabies virus since March 8, based upon clinical signs. A number of people came in contact with the animal and have been advised of possible exposure.

US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidelines recommend animals that are not current on their rabies vaccinations be destroyed. Pets with up to date vaccinations should be re-boostered within five days. Pets should never be handled without protective gloves after being exposed to wildlife, due to the potential for carrying residual saliva from the infected animal. All pets should be vaccinated as a primary defense against the spread of rabies.

There are three primary routes of transmission of the rabies virus, which is carried in the saliva of the infected animal: 1) the primary route of transmission is through a bite which breaks the skin of the victim, 2) salivary contact to an open, fresh wound, or, 3) salivary contact to the mucous membranes of a potential victim.

When dealing with primary rabies vectors (raccoons, foxes, skunks, and bats) or unknown animals, such as wildlife, it is recommended that the animal be handled with protective gloves to prevent viral transmission. People should stay away from any animal that they have not been cleared to hold or pet, including owned dogs or cats, and especially wildlife.

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2 Comments on "Rabies case confirmed in New Hanover County"

A concerned animal lover
2015 years 8 months ago

I agree it is ridiculous that they don’t do the rabies shots themselves. Seems to me that this shelter does a whole bunch of nothing in the way of putting themselves out for any animal or even a human for that matter. When budget was supposedly cut leading them to stop opening on Saturdays for adoption (not even for appointment only)instead of closing during the week one day so that they could open on Saturdays (meaning more adoptions) they just rode the wave. Guess no one wanted to give up their Saturday. Who the hell hires these people? Most seem to have not one ounce of compassion for animals and they do absolutely NOTHING to help the people that come there looking to adopt. They act as if you are bothering them & when you try to ask them anything they act as if everything to do with the animal’s welfare is a big secret. Come on are you trying to find homes for these animals or what people? Tell the public how many innocent & perfectly adoptable/saveable cats and dogs you are killing- they NEED to know, maybe it will spark a desire to help. Makes me sick.
Pender County Animal Control is awesome all because the director truly loves animals & goes out of her way, doing everything she can to save them. That should be a qualification but instead many of NHAC workers don’t even own a pet themselves. They are just trying to “protect the public” from rabies while putting down God only knows how many perfectly adoptable animals.
Don’t mean to be ugly but I needed to get this off my chest.

pet rescuer
2015 years 8 months ago

Do you know the animal shelter in New Hanover County does not vaccinate the animals they adopt out? With confirmed cases of rabies its a huge risk! You adopt a pet there you have to take the pet yourself to have it vaccinated, they have you sign a precode violation saying you aree in violation of not having a pet vaccinated in the county for rabies. If you dont return withn 30 days with proof of vaccination they make it active. Perhaps if they understood rabies has a dormant phase and an incubation stage and every pet they adopt out unvaccinated is risking the public and the county with lawsuits. You still pay the nearly $70 fee to adopt but get an unvaccinated animal to bring home to your family. Brunswick and adjoining counties infact vaccinate the animals at the shelter befor adoption. Some places are not safe places to cut corners with money!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! The vet was sure surprised when we showed up with an unvaccinated pet from the shelter, I took our pet that day to the vet, then quarantined him myself before bringing him inside around my children.