South Carolina’s public health agency confirmed a raccoon in Lexington County tested positive for rabies.
The Department of Health and Environmental Control said in a Monday release that a raccoon found near Silver Creek Drive and Platinum Drive in Lexington was rabid. While no people are known to have been exposed to rabies from that raccoon, two dogs were exposed. The dogs are being quarantined per the state’s Rabies Control Act.
The raccoon was submitted to DHEC for testing on Nov. 25. The positive rabies conformation came on Nov. 28.
“Keeping your pets up to date on their rabies vaccination is the easiest way to protect you and your family from this deadly virus. Any mammal has the ability to carry and transmit the disease to people or pets. Therefore, give wild and stray animals plenty of space,” DHEC rabies program team leader Terri McCollister said in a statement.
“In South Carolina, rabies is most often found in wildlife such as raccoons, skunks, foxes, and bats, but pets are just as susceptible to the virus. If you see an animal in need, avoid touching it. Contact someone trained in handling animals, such as your local animal control officer, wildlife control officer, or a wildlife rehabilitator.”
Anyone who thinks they have come in contact with this raccoon or another animal that potentially has rabies can call DHEC’s environmental affairs office at 803-896-0620 from 8:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Monday through Friday, or after hours and on holidays at 888-847-0902 (Select option two from the menu).
The health agency has confirmed 92 animals with rabies in 2021. Six of those have been in Lexington County.