LANSING, Mich. — As temperatures begin to rise and you spend more time outdoors, the state is urging you to protect yourself, your family and your pets against the deadly disease--rabies.
In Michigan, bats and skunks are the most common carriers of rabies.
Here are a few tips from the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services to help you protect yourself against rabies this summer season.
Avoid contact with wildlife. Do not keep wild animals as pets and do not try to rehabilitate wildlife yourself. Wild animals can carry rabies without looking sick.
If you see a wild animal that looks sick, report it to the Department of Natural Resources online at Michigan.gov/eyesinthefield, or by calling them at 517-336-5030.
If you are scratched an bitten by a wild animal, see a doctor right away.
If you find a bat in your home, safely confine or college the bat if possible and contact your local health department to determine if it should be tested for rabies.
Protect your pets by getting them vaccinated against rabies. Even cats that live indoors and never go outside need to be vaccinated as they can come into contact with a bat that gets inside the home.
If your pet is bitten or scratched by a wild animal, or if you believe they have had unsupervised contact with wildlife, contact your veterinarian as soon as possible.Even if your pet is currently vaccinated against rabies, additional actions may need to be taken to prevent them from becoming infected.
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