FORT HOOD (May 20, 2014) Fort Hood officials are warning of the danger of rabies after a resident was attacked by a rabid dark gray and white kitten Friday outside of a home on Central Drive and a rabid skunk was found on May 12 in a post motor pool.
“At this time, there is one confirmed exposure and the victim has started post exposure rabies prophylaxis,” Dr. John Kuczek, the officer in charge of the Fort Hood Veterinary Center said in a press release Tuesday.
The post’s Public Health Command and the Fort Hood Veterinary Center were urging residents Tuesday to avoid handling wild or stray animals and to make sure pets are vaccinated.
Infected animals may not present symptoms until just days before death, and can spread the virus while appearing to be completely normal, officials said.
“The importance of receiving appropriate medical evaluation following contact with a feral (or) stray animal cannot be overstated,” Kuczek said.
“If you or your pets had contact with either of these cases, please contact your local veterinarian or health care provider immediately,” he said.
Humans can become infected and harbor the virus for weeks to months, and in extremely rare cases, years before becoming ill, officials said, but once symptoms do appear, death is almost certain.