Utah warned against rabies after seven bats test positive

Published on August 11, 2017 at 02:03PM

The Utah Department of Agriculture and Food is reminding people to be aware of the health risk of rabies after seven bats test positive for rabies in Utah.

A common way people to come in contact with rabies is through bats, but also through interaction with pets or livestock that are infected.

Signs of rabies include obvious changes in normal behavior like aggression, attacking without provocation, foaming at the mouth, no interest in food or water, staggering, or paralysis. Wild animals may act uncharacteristically tame. Infected bats may be seen flying around during the daytime or resting on the ground. They may also show no noticeable signs at all.

If you observe an animal exhibiting any of these signs, or think that a pet or person may have been exposed to a rabid animal, call 1-888-EPI-UTAH (375-8824).

Historically, 15-25 bats test positive for rabies each year in Utah. Many of those are submitted for testing after exposure to humans or pets has already happened. Wild carnivores such as raccoons, skunks, foxes and coyotes are also considered high risk species in a potential exposure situation.