Another rabid bat has turned up in the Santa Clarita Valley, at a residence in Newhall.
The third rabid bat of the season was reported by Los Angeles County Department of Public Health officials in April. This time, one showed up at a residence in Newhall.
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The bat was seen in the daytime, hanging on a wall outside of a residence. It flew away but was later found on the ground.
The previous two rabid bats were found in February, in an Agua Dulce swimming pool and by a cat in a Los Angeles backyard.
Last year’s rabid bat season started in March and saw nearly half of the county’s identified rabid bats–14 of 33–turning up in the Santa Clarita Valley, even though the SCV has less than three percent of the county’s human population.
Bats are the most common carriers of rabies, but far fewer than one percent of bats actually have rabies.
If a bat is flying during the daytime, showing interest in a pet’s food dish, flopping around on the ground or dead in the water, residents shouldn’t touch it. Instead, they should call Animal Control.
There’s been only one case of a bat biting a human in L.A. County in recent years, and it happened two years ago in Acton when a sick bat fell out of a tree and landed on someone’s shoulder.
A bat bite feels like a tiny pin-prick, and often it’s difficult to tell if and when it happens. Anyone who believes they might have been bitten by a bat should seek medical attention right away. Bats that are found indoors near a sleeping person, young child, adult that cannot speak or pet should also be tested for rabies.
Pets’ shots should be kept current. If Animal Control thinks a pet has been bitten they’ll be subject to 30 days’ home quarantine if they’ve had all their shots. Otherwise they’ll be taken to a shelter for six months for observation.
To stay updated on the latest reports of rabid bats, visit the Department of Veterinary Public Health online.
Leon Worden of SCV News contributed to this report.
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Source: Santa Clarita News