Rabid fox attacks Polk man

Published 1:17 pm Tuesday, November 6, 2012

State vet investigating possible exposure to horses

The Polk County Animal Control office received confirmation Tuesday, Nov. 6 that a fox that attacked a Green Creek man was rabid.

The attack occurred on Friday, Nov. 2 in the John Smith Road area. The man walked around his barn and was attacked three times on the leg, according to animal control officer Michael Herman.

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Herman said the man was able to get away from the fox and get to another person who shot and killed the fox.

The man began rabies treatments on the day of the attack, Herman said.

State veterinarians were scheduled to come to the area Tuesday, Nov. 6 to investigate whether or not two horses were also attacked. Herman said if the horses were also attacked the state veterinarian would require them to be quarantined for six months. The horses have been quarantined since Friday, Nov. 2, he said.

The fox is the third rabid animal discovered in Polk County this year. The other rabid animals found were both skunks; one captured on Sept. 4 and the second on Sept. 7.

The first rabid skunk attacked farm animals off Hwy. 108 in Mill Spring and the second skunk attacked a cat and killed kittens in Pea Ridge.

The fox killed last Friday was the first attack on a human this year.

Herman said anyone who is attacked by an animal suspected to be rabid should contact animal control and seek treatment. St. Luke’s Hospital has treatments for rabies, he said.

Herman also said it is important for people not to shoot suspected rabid animals in the head to kill them. The animal control office needs the brain in tact in order to send it off to the state veterinarian office to be tested.

A rabies clinic is tentatively scheduled in the Green Creek area for Sat., Nov. 17.