The Department of Health and Environmental Control (DHEC) has confirmed that a raccoon in Greenville County and a raccoon in Charleston County have tested positive for rabies.
- Greenville County: A raccoon found near Old Hunts Bridge Road and Blue Lake Road in Greenville has tested positive for rabies. There are no known human exposures reported at this time; however, a dog was exposed on April 30. The raccoon was submitted to DHEC’s laboratory for testing on April 30 and was confirmed to have rabies on May 1.
- Charleston County: A raccoon found near Hazelwood Drive, Jaywood Circle, and Taberwood Circle in Charleston has tested positive for rabies. There are no known human exposures reported at this time. The raccoon was submitted to DHEC’s laboratory for testing on April 30 and was confirmed to have rabies on May 1.
Please contact DHEC if you know of any possible human or animal exposure to these animals. Be sure to immediately wash with soap and water any part of your body that may have come into contact with saliva or neural tissue from a potentially rabid animal, and seek medical attention. Exposure is defined as a bite or scratch or contact with saliva or body fluids from an infected animal.
“To reduce the risk of getting rabies, always give wild and stray animals plenty of space,” said David Vaughan, Director of DHEC’s Onsite Wastewater, Rabies Prevention, and Enforcement Division. “If you see an animal in need, avoid touching it, since the possibility of exposure to rabies can occur anywhere and anytime. Contact someone trained in handling animals, such as your local animal control officer or wildlife rehabilitator.”
If you believe that you, family members, or pets have come into contact with an animal that potentially has rabies, please call your local DHEC Environmental Affairs Office (8:30 a.m.-5 p.m., Monday-Friday). To report a bite or exposure on holidays or times outside of normal business hours, please call the DHEC after-hours service number at (888) 847-0902.
It’s important to keep pets up to date on their rabies vaccination, as this is one of the easiest and most effective ways to protect against the disease.
Contact information for local Bureau of Environmental Health Services offices is available at www.scdhec.gov/EAoffices. For more information on rabies visit www.scdhec.gov/rabies or www.cdc.gov/rabies.