Health officials issue rabies alert for northwest Pasco County
HUDSON - The Pasco County Health Department issued a rabies alert for the northwest part of the county today after a cat tested positive for the disease Thursday. The alert, in effect for 60 days, includes the area north of Hudson Avenue, south of County Line Road, east of Little Road and west of Shady Hills, the health department reported. Alerts are designed to increase awareness to the public, but they should not give a false sense of security to people in areas not included in the alert, the department said. Health officials offered the following advice:Keep rabies vaccinations up to date for all pets; if your pet is bitten by a wild animal, seek veterinary assistance for the animal immediately; do not handle, feed or unintentionally attract wild animals by leaving pet food outside, or garbage cans open; teach children never to handle unfamiliar animals, wild or domestic, even if they appear friendly; if you are bitten by any animal seek medical care promptly. Residents should contact Pasco County Animal Services at (727) 834-3216, (813) 929-1212, or (352) 521-5194 to report animal bites or scratches and for information on stray dogs and cats. They should contact the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission at 1-863-648-3203 for concerns about wild animals.