ABC Action News reports that the Florida Department of Health has issued a Rabies Alert for parts of Polk County after raccoons there have tested positive for rabies.

The ABC28 reports states that this rabies alert comes a day after the Polk County Sheriff’s Office said a 15-year-old boy was bitten by a raccoon in Davenport, confirming the 10th. case of rabies in the area.

The Florida Department of Health in Polk County (DOH-Polk) issued the alert for 60-days for Bartow and Loughman areas.

DOH Polk said in a release..

All residents and visitors in Polk County should be aware that rabies is present in the wild animal population, and domestic animals are at risk if not vaccinated. The public is asked to maintain a heightened awareness that rabies is active in Polk County. Alerts are designed to increase awareness in the public. Please be aware that rabies activities can also occur outside the alert area.”

This rabies alert is in the Bartow area includes the following boundaries:

  • North boundary Georgia Street
  • South boundary Mann Road
  • East boundary U.S. 17
  • West boundary Mary Holland Park Road

The center of the rabies alert in the Loughman area includes the following :

  • North boundary Kinney Harmon Road
  • South and East boundary Providence Golf Club
  • West boundary U.S. 17

Everyone in the area is advised to take the following precautions:

  • Keep rabies vaccinations up to date for all pets.
  • Keep your pets under direct supervision so they do not come in contact with wild animals.
  • 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 with open
    garbage cans or litter or by leaving pet food outside.
  • Never adopt wild animals or bring them into your home.
  • Teach children never to handle unfamiliar animals even if they appear friendly.
  • Prevent bats from entering living quarters or occupied spaces in homes, churches, schools and other similar areas, where they might come in contact with people and pets.
  • If you are bitten by any animal seek care promptly. Wash the wound thoroughly with soap and water. Go to your family doctor or hospital for medical attention immediately.

If you think you or your pet has had an “exposure,” please contact the PCSO Animal Control Section at 863.577.1762.

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Rich Fields is a veteran radio broadcaster who is best known for having been the Announcer on the Price is Right. He is also an Emmy Award winning Meteorologist .