Only two cases of rabid animals reported in Milton since 2017


Published April 20, 2022 at 12:05 pm

Milton has a lot of beautiful wildlife, however, residents should always be cautious of rabid animals.

While the Town has only seen two cases of rabid animals since 2017, it’s important to take proper measures to ensure you’re protecting yourself.

Both cases reported in Milton were found in bats, one of which was reported in 2019 and the other in 2020. Since then, there have been no additional cases reported.

Out of all the municipalities in Halton, the City of Burlington has seen the highest number of positive rabies results with a total of 21 cases since 2017.

Since residents may be more tempted to feed or get close to wild animals this time of year, it’s important to avoid doing so as such activity could endanger animals as well as people and their pets.

Rabies is an infectious disease that is caused by a virus and could affect any warm-blooded animal, including humans. The infection could lead to acute viral encephalomyelitis which is the inflammation of the brain and spinal cord and is ultimately fatal.

The most common carriers of the rabies virus in Ontario are raccoons, foxes, skunks, coyotes and bats.

The virus is usually transmitted by a bite since it is present in the saliva of an infected animal. Rabies can also be transmitted if infectious material such as saliva from the infected animal enters a wound or a mucous membrane, such as the eyes, nose or mouth.

Anyone who has had potential exposure to rabies due to an animal bite or scratch, should always wash wounds with soap and water and seek medical attention immediately.

Signs of rabies in animals might include them acting friendly or tame, hiding in isolated areas, paralysis, expressing a lack of fear, extreme excitement or aggression, gnawing or biting their own legs, attacking objects or other animals and frothing at the mouth.

Signs that a human may have been exposed to rabies include flu-like symptoms with fever, headache and nausea. As the disease progresses, symptoms might also include insomnia, anxiety, slight or partial paralysis, increased activity, restlessness, hallucinations, difficulty swallowing and fear of water.

For more information on how to protect yourself from rabies in Halton Region, click here.

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