Photo: Grand Canyon National Park, used under CC BY 2.0
A Fayetteville resident’s dog caught a bat that has tested positive for rabies.
The bat was collected last week by an officer with the city’s animal services department after receiving a call from the dog’s owner, according to a news release. The officer sent the bat to the Arkansas Department of Health, where it tested positive for for the virus.
The dog is up to date on its rabies vaccination and is currently under the watch of a licensed veterinarian.
Rabies is usually spread by an infected animal that bites another animal or person. The virus typically leads to death unless treatment is provided soon after exposure.
In Arkansas, rabies can circulate among wild skunks and bats.
“If you find a bat in your home, isolate it to one room, leave the room and close the doors,” said Justine Lentz,
the city’s animal services superintendent, in a statement. “Call either an animal control officer or a nuisance wildlife control company to capture the bat for testing.”