Skunk Found In Colonia Tests Positive For Rabies

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COLONIA—The Woodbridge Township Department of Health & Human Services has been notified by the New Jersey Department of Health & Human Services that a skunk recovered on Sept. 24 tested positive for rabies.

The stricken animal was observed acting erratically by residents in the vicinity of Clover Avenue in the Colonia section of Woodbridge Township.  The animal was recovered by Woodbridge Township Animal Control and was provided to the State Department of Health & Human Services forensic laboratory in Trenton for testing.

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Dennis M. Green, director of health, Woodbridge Township Department of Health & Human Services, urges caution when encountering suspect animals and offered the following rabies-related health information and precautionary measures:

1) If you have come in close contact with a skunk, raccoon, or other animal exhibiting unusual or aggressive behavior in the Colonia area over the past seven to ten days, call the Woodbridge Township Department of Health & Human Services immediately at 1-732-855-0600, ext 5007;

2) Rabies can affect any warm-blooded animal.  Do not come in close contact with stray or wild animals and do not let children play with or feed wildlife or unknown animals/pets;

3) Be cautions when encountering wildlife as animals affected with rabies will deviate from normal behavior.  If you see a wild animal acting erratic or unusual, contact the Woodbridge Health Department/Animal Control at 1-732-855-0600, ext 5007;

4) Make sure pets are current with rabies vaccine and health-related shots.  If pets are not current, take them to a veterinarian immediately for a rabies vaccine;

5) Do not feed pets or place food outside, as this practice will attract wildlife to the home or area;

6) Make sure all garbage and recycling containers are tightly closed and seal any potential areas where skunks can nest, such as under decks, garages, wood piles and brush areas;

7) If you are bitten by an animal, especially one that is acting erratic or unusual, contain the animal if possible to do so safely.  Alternatively, obtain a good description of the animal for later identification.  Immediately cleanse the wound, seek medical attention, and contact the Woodbridge Health Department at 1-732-855-0600, Ext 5007.

For more information on rabies contact the Woodbridge Township Health Department at 1-732-855-0600 or the New Jersey Department of Health web page at www.state.nj.us/health.


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