Health District Warns About Possible Rabies Exposure

Wichita Falls, Texas. The Wichita Falls-Wichita County Public Health District is alerting the public concerning a rabies exposure after a Wichita Falls puppy tested positive for rabies. 

According to officials, the puppies involved were advertised on Craigslist in Henrietta, Texas (pictured is the mother dog). The puppies were at a home on FM 1197, and all nine puppies in the litter were adopted.
One of the puppies, a shepherd mix, was brought home by an individual from Wichita Falls, and the puppy bit the person. The puppy tested positive for rabies.
 
If
you took one of these puppies home, or was exposed to the litter in Henrietta, please contact the Health District immediately at (940)761-7833 or 7824. Also, if you know of someone that handled the puppies or took one home, please have them contact the Health District immediately. 

Rabies is a deadly viral disease that attacks the central nervous system and is most often seen among wild animals such as bats, raccoons, skunks and foxes, but any mammal can be infected with rabies. Pets can get rabies if they are not vaccinated to protect them against infection. 

Health officials say that the first sign of rabies is usually a change in an animal's behavior. It may become excited or irritable and attack anything in its path. Staggering, convulsions, choking, frothing at the mouth, unusual sounds and paralysis may also be seen. Animals usually die within one week after showing symptoms.

People are usually exposed to the rabies virus when an infected animal bites them, or if saliva from a rabid animal enters an open cut or mucous membrane (eyes, nose or mouth). If a human becomes infected, flu like symptoms will appear and progress into delirium, abnormal behavior, hallucinations, and insomnia. Once clinical signs of rabies appear, the disease is nearly always fatal.
For medical-related questions, please contact Lynette Williams, RN, Nursing Division Administrator at (940) 761-7892.