Media Release from Medina County Health Department

Bat Reported As Positive for Rabies in Medina County

Medina, Ohio - A bat from the Grant Street area in Medina City tested positive for rabies on May 10, 2011.  The Medina County Health Department sent the bat to the Ohio Department of Health (ODH) Laboratory in Columbus on May 9, 2011.  There was no reported exposure to any people; however, 3 family pets from the property where the bat was found were potentially exposed to the bat.  In the past, a rabies case occurs every one to three years in Medina County.  The last reported Medina County rabies case was in a bat from Wadsworth Township in 2009.

Rabies is common in bat populations in Ohio.  Generally, four to five percent of all bats test positive for rabies.  So far this year, Ohio has had 8 total rabies positive animals including 5 bats and 3 raccoons.

It is important to keep bats out of the home and bedrooms to prevent exposure.  If a bat is in a house, CAPTURE THE BAT and call the Medina County Health Department.  DO NOT RELEASE THE BAT.

Ways to catch a bat inside a building:

  • Wear gloves and avoid direct skin contact with the bat.
  • Avoid harming the bat head.
  • Keep the bat in one room.  Close windows, room doors, and closet doors.
  • Turn on lights if the room is dark and wait for the bat to land.
  • Cover the bat with a coffee can or similar container.  Slide a piece of cardboard under the can to trap the bat and tape the cardboard tightly to the can.
  • If necessary, use a net or long pole with a piece of duct tape (sticky side out) to capture the bat.
  • Do not use a glue board to capture the bat as this affects the rabies test.
  • Do not drown the bat as this affects the rabies test.

If humans or pets are exposed to a bat, immediately contact the Medina County Health Department  at 330-723-9523 or toll-free at 1-888-723-9688.  If a pet is exposed to a bat, contact a veterinarian to check the pet's rabies vaccination status and find out if a booster shot is recommended.

Rabies information is available by visiting the ODH website at www.odh.ohio.gov/ODHPrograms/dis/ZOOnoses/Rabies/rab1.aspx, the Medina County Health Department website at www.medinahealth.org, or by contacting the Medina County Health Department Environmental Division at 330-723-9523 or toll-free at 1-888-723-9688.

 

Status: 

Current

Category: 

General/Other