Rabid bat dies in Xenia, health department issues warning

Published: Friday, August 10, 2018 @ 4:28 PM

FILE PHOTO (Sgarton/Morguefile license: https://morguefile.com/license)
FILE PHOTO (Sgarton/Morguefile license: https://morguefile.com/license)(Sgarton/Morguefile)

A dead bat found in a Xenia house tested positive for rabies and health officials are alerting people with the information needed to keep your family and pets safe.

The bat was taken to the Ohio Department of Health lab, where it was tested, according to Greene County Public Health.

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“"If an animal is rabid and it attacks another animal it can certainly there can be an exposure that way,” said Amy Schmitt, a nurse with Greene County Public Health. "The rabies virus in their saliva can be transmitted to you through your eyes your nose your mouth your mucus membrane and you wouldn't even know that."

There have been two cases of rabies in humans in the last year in the United States, according to the CDC.

The bat that tested positive for rabies in Xenia was exposed to humans, health officials said.

Officials said because bats live in colonies if one of the animals has rabies there’s a chance it could spread to others.

"They do groom each other so there is an exchange of saliva body fluids so certainly is a possibility,” said Jeff Webb, Environmental Health Director for Greene County Public Health.

Webb said its important to take precautions for yourself and your pets, which includes getting vaccinations.

Rabies can attack the nervous system in humans creating headaches and dizzy sensations.

Health officials said the rabid bat was found to be acting aggressive in the middle of the day, however no other cases have been confirmed in the county this week.