Four people exposed to rabid llama in GA
BLUE RIDGE, GA (WRCB) -- After biting and spitting at people, a llama in Morganton, Georgia has tested positive for rabies.
Four people have been in contact with the llama. The Fannin County Environmental Health officials recommend all four immediately seek medical advice from their healthcare provider and consult with the Georgia Poison Control Center to determine the extent of their exposure.
Shannon Bradburn, an Environmental Health Specialist, was contacted by the Ocoee Animal Hospital in Blue Ridge on January 4 stating that a llama specimen had confirmed positive for the rabies virus.
Bradburn said the veterinarian had been called to the property on Elrod Road in Morganton, GA in late December because the animal had exhibited signs of aggression, loss of motor skills, biting itself, biting people and spitting at caretakers.
The veterinarian euthanized the llama and collected the specimen for the testing that was subsequently performed by the two labs.
The caretaker who was spat on by the llama is receiving post-exposure rabies treatment.
Rabies is almost always deadly in humans who contract it and do not receive treatment. People must recognize the exposure and promptly get appropriate medical treatment before developing rabies symptoms.
Health officials urge residents to protect against rabies by maintaining rabies vaccinations in their pets and livestock.
For more information about rabies and its prevention, call Fannin County Environmental Health at (706) 632-3024 or log onto the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) website.