COLUMBIA, S.C. (WCSC) – The South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control says more than a dozen people have been referred to their medical providers after a possible rabies exposure.
DHEC said Friday a calf raised near Highway 28 South in Clemson tested positive for rabies.
“The calf was part of a rabies-vaccinated herd but was too young to have been vaccinated against rabies,” a release from the agency states.
The calf was submitted to DHEC’s laboratory for testing on Tuesday and was confirmed to have rabies on Wednesday.
South Carolina law requires all dogs, cats, and ferrets be vaccinated against rabies and revaccinated at a frequency to provide continuous protection of the pet from rabies using a vaccine approved by the department and licensed by the United States Department of Agriculture.
Livestock are susceptible to rabies and all livestock with USDA approved rabies vaccinations should be vaccinated. Cattle and horses, however, are the most frequently reported infected livestock species. Species for which licensed vaccines are not available (goat and swine), that have frequent contact with people or are considered valuable, should also be vaccinated.
“Keeping your pets and livestock current on their rabies vaccination is a responsibility that comes with owning an animal. It is one of the easiest and most effective ways you can protect yourself, your family, your pets, and your livestock from this fatal disease. That is an investment worth making to provide yourself some peace of mind,” Rabies Program Team Leader Terri McCollister said. If your pet or livestock animal is found with wounds of unknown origin, please consider that your animal may have been exposed to rabies.
If you believe that you, your family members, or your pets have come in contact with this calf or another animal that potentially has rabies, please call DHEC’s Environmental Affairs Greenville office at 864-372-3273 during normal business hours of 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. weekdays or after hours and on holidays at 888-847-0902 (Select Option 2).
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