La Porte Police Animal Control representatives caution residents when encountering bats
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On March 8th, 2018 a deceased bat was located in the 500 block of La Porte’s Fairway Drive. Upon receiving the information, La Porte Police Department’s Animal Control Division immediately responded for further investigation. Tests of the animal later confirmed positive results for rabies. 

The following week, another bat was found deceased in a garage within the same neighborhood.  The second bat, located along La Porte’s Eagle Lane, also tested positive for rabies. While no known human exposure occurred during either of the incidents, if community members observe a deceased bat, they are encouraged to contact the Police Department immediately at 281-471-2141.  An Animal Control Officer will be immediately dispatched to capture and/or collect the bat, which will then be sent for appropriate testing. 

 

Residents are also reminded that no person can tell if a bat has rabies just by looking at it; rabies can be confirmed only by having the animal tested in a laboratory. So to ensure personal safety, all persons are encouraged to avoid handling bats.

 

As a side note, the Center for Disease Control informs that most bats do not have rabies. Even among sick or deceased bats submitted for rabies testing, only about 6% test positive for rabies. Nevertheless, bats account for 90% of human exposure to rabies nationwide.  Therefore, adults should teach children to avoid handling bats, whether   found dead or alive.   

 

If you or someone you know has been bitten by a bat - or if infectious material (such as saliva or blood) from a bat gets into your eyes, nose, mouth, or a wound - wash the affected area thoroughly with soap and water and seek medical attention immediately.  

 

For more information on bats or other Animal Control issues, please call the La Porte Animal Control Division at 281-842-3700.

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