Laguna Niguel Park Ranger Finds Rabid Bat

Los Angeles Post

On Sunday a park ranger found a bat near the Laguna Niguel Regional Park about 11:30 a.m.  The ranger was on a walkway near La Paz Road.  Orange County Health Officials have reported that a positive result for rabies came back from testing the bat.  Although no people were seen in the vicinity, they have asked those who might have seen or been near the bat to get in touch with them.  If you touched the bat you should call the Orange County Health Care Agency at (714) 834-8180 immediately.


The rabies virus is often found in saliva and can be transmitted through broken skin or biting.  Bites from bats can go unnoticed because they have such small teeth.  In recent years, most human cases of rabies have been from bat strains of the rabies virus.


Rabies is a virus that requires quick medical assistance because it can be fatal.  According to information on the website for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, once symptoms of the disease begin to show up, such as headache, general weakness, fever, and discomfort, it is more likely that death will occur.  The virus infects the nervous system and can cause a variety of problems.


Treatment for rabies is effective and safe, according to Deanne Thompson, Orange County Health Care Agency spokeswoman.  She said that the majority of rabies cases are found in bats and skunks, with 11 rabid bats reported in the county last year.  One of those bats was also found in the Laguna Niguel Regional Park.  Sunday’s bat is the second one this year that has tested positive for rabies.


It is recommended that to avoid becoming infected with rabies people should avoid wild animals, keep screens on doors and windows, keep pets vaccinated, and if a bat appears, contact animal control.  If you are bitten by a bat, immediately wash the area with water and soap and contact your doctor.


If you suspect any animal showing signs of rabies please call the Orange County Health Care Agency at (714) 834-8180 immediately.


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