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    1 exposed after rabid fox found in Florence County, DHEC says

    By Taylor Ford,

    2024-06-11

    https://img.particlenews.com/image.php?url=2xi70C_0tnyXUiu00

    FLORENCE COUNTY, S.C. (WBTW) — The South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control (DHEC) confirmed that a rabid fox was found in Florence County, and one person has been exposed.

    The fox was found between High Hill and Borkowitz roads in Scranton. The person exposed has been referred to their health care provider, DHEC said.

    The fox was submitted to DHEC’s laboratory for testing on Jun. 6, and was confirmed to have rabies the next day.

    “Rabies is usually transmitted through a bite or scratch that allows saliva from an infected animal to be introduced into the body of a person or another animal,” said Terri McCollister, Rabies Program Director. “However, infected saliva or neural tissue contact with open wounds or areas such as the eyes, nose or mouth could also potentially transmit rabies.”

    “To reduce the risk of getting rabies, always give wild and stray animals their space,” McCollister continued. “If you see an animal in need, avoid touching it and contact someone trained in handling animals, such as your local animal control officer, wildlife control operator or a wildlife rehabilitator. Please report all animal bites, scratches and exposures to potentially rabid animals to DHEC.”

    If you believe you, someone you know, or your pets have come in contact with this fox or another animal that possibly has rabies, you are asked to call DHEC’s Public Health Florence office at (843)-915-8801 during normal business hours 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday-Friday or after hours and on holidays at (888)-847-0902 and select Option 2, DHEC said.

    This fox is the fourth animal in Florence County to test positive for rabies in 2024.

    There have been 34 cases of rabid animals statewide this year. Since 2002, South Carolina has averaged about 148 positive cases a year. In 2023, four of the 78 confirmed rabies cases in South Carolina were in Florence County, DHEC said.

    The contact information for local public health offices is available at scdhec.gov/RabiesContacts and for more information on rabies visit scdhec.gov/rabies or cdc.gov/rabies .

    * * *

    Taylor Ford is a digital journalist for News13 . She joined the News13 team in January 2023. Taylor is a Florence native and covers the Pee Dee out of News13’s Florence Bureau. Read more of Taylor’s work here .

    Copyright 2024 Nexstar Media Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

    For the latest news, weather, sports, and streaming video, head to WBTW.

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