UPDATE: 7th case of rabies confirmed in Whitfield County - WRCBtv.com | Chattanooga News, Weather & Sports

UPDATE: 7th case of rabies confirmed in Whitfield County

Posted: Updated:
WHITFIELD COUNTY, GA (WRCB) -

UPDATE: An outbreak of rabies cases in north Georgia has officials on high alert.    

There have been more cases of the deadly virus reported in Whitfield County over the last six months than the area has seen in the last five years. 

The intersection of Wolfe Street and Mount Olivet Road is where officials found a rabid fox last month. 

Officers euthanize the animal and tested it to confirm Whitfield County's seventh case of rabies in less than six month. 

The intersection isn't far from Cohutta Elementary School. 

Principal Larry Farner is being proactive. 

His staff is educating students and families about how to identify signs of rabies. They are also patrolling the property. 

"We're going to have our administrators go out and walk and do rounds but we always have our staff members take out radios when they go outside so that they can contact us immediately if there is something that comes up," Farner said.

Rabies has recently been found in raccoons, skunks, a cat and now a fox. 

Whitfield County Rabies Control Officer David Hedden said it's time for parents to talk to their children. 

"They need to be warned, they need to be educated, do not pet this even if it's coming closer to you," Hedden added. 

Hedden said it's important to know the warning signs. 

If you see an animal being aggressive, having difficulty walking or appearing to choke-- Stay away and report it immediately. 

"It spreads through the saliva, like biting each other," he said. 

In the event of a bite, see a doctor immediately. 

Hedden said treatment works if it is in the early stages.

The best thing you can do is get your pets vaccinated. 

For more information about rabies clinics in Whitfield County, call the animal shelter at 706-278-2018.


PREVIOUS STORY: Police in Whitfield County are warning residents about rabies.

Rabies is a deadly virus that can spread to human through the saliva of infected animals.

According to their Facebook page, Cohutta Police say they were dispatched to Wolfe Street at the intersection of Mount Olivet Road, which is near an elementary school.

Once on the scene police and the Whitfield County Rabies Control Unit decided to euthanize the fox.

The animal was sent to the U.S Department of Agriculture, who yesterday, confirmed the fox was infected with the deadly virus.

Today, the Centers for Disease Control will receive the results for verification.

Chief of Police Raymond Grossman notified Cohutta Elementary’s staff of the situation.

Police are urging parents to warn children against playing with any animals that show signs of strange behavior, and say all pets should be up to date on their rabies vaccine.

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