Rabid bat discovered in Washtenaw County, health authorities say.  

For the first time since 2022, health officials in Washtenaw County discovered a rabid bat.According to the Washtenaw County Health Department, the bat was discovered in Zip Code 48108. According to the county, 13 bats have been tested this year.  

"We were enjoying a longer stretch of no rabies-positive animals, but it is not uncommon for us to see some rabid bats in the county every year," said county epidemiology coordinator Ailen Velazquez in a statement.   

Since 2006, around 50 bats have tested positive for rabies in the county. Over the last 18 years, at least one horse and eight skunks have tested positive. 

A map of cases from 2011 to 2023 reveals that multiple rabid animals were discovered in the Ann Arbor area.As of May 1, seven bats tested positive for rabies in Michigan in 2024. Two bats tested positive in Wayne County, and one each in Lapeer and St. Clair.  

"Our public health personnel is available to discuss each scenario and evaluate whether there was a risk of rabies exposure. "This is critical because rabies is almost always fatal if not prevented by post-exposure vaccination," Velazquez stated. 

Health experts provide the following tips for rabies prevention: 

To keep bats out of your home, install screens on any open doors and windows.   

Look for other small holes, particularly in older homes. Bats can go through openings the size of a dime.   

If you are bitten or injured by a stray or wild animal, treat the wound with soap and water right away and get medical attention.   

– Keep all pets, including cats, dogs, ferrets, and horses, up to date on rabies vaccines.  

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