On May 18, the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) laboratory confirmed that a bat found in Shiawassee County tested positive for rabies. Rabies can only be confirmed with laboratory testing.
Rabies is most commonly transmitted by a rabid animal scratch or bite. Most reported cases occur in wild animals such as raccoons, skunks, bats, and foxes.
If a bat is found inside the home, the Shiawassee County Health Department recommends safely collecting the bat and following these guidelines:
• Wear leather gloves. A bat should never be handled with bare hands.
• Place a clear container over the bat, slide a piece of sturdy cardboard under the container, and firmly secure the cardboard or the lid to the container with tape.
• A dead bat should be submitted for rabies testing. Do not crush the bat or put the bat into the freezer.
• Contact the Communicable Disease Nurse at the Shiawassee County Health Department at 989- 743-2356. If the Health Department is closed, keep the bat cold until it can be taken to the Health Department.
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