Rabid cat in Plant City is sixth rabies case for Hillsborough County

- Another cat has tested positive for rabies in Hillsborough County.

State health officials said one person and two domestic dogs were exposed to the cat, which lived around North Dort Street and Rowena Park in Plant City. The Florida Department of Health for the county described the cat as a white and brown tabby domestic shorthair. Officials are trying to find anyone else who may have been exposed.

The adult who was exposed was given a vaccination, and health officials recommended booster shots for the two dogs. The owner will be asked to quarantine them inside their residence for 45 days. 

Health officials want to notify the residences and businesses within the following boundaries:
North - Interstate 4
South - Airport Road/Grant Street
East - Park Road
West - Branch Forbes/North Forbes Road

So far in 2018, six rabid animals were identified in Hillsborough County: Four cats, one bat and one raccoon, which exposed a total of 14 people and four domestic dogs to the disease. Last week, a rabid cat in Gibsonton exposed the disease to an adult, a child and a family dog. Last year, three animals exposed ten people.

DOH offered the following precautions:
- Keep rabies vaccinations up to date for all pets.
- If your pet is bitten by a wild animal, seek veterinary assistance for the animal immediately and contact the Hillsborough County Pet Resource Center at (813) 744-5660.
- Do not handle, feed, or unintentionally attract wild animals with open garbage cans or litter.
- Never adopt wild animals or bring them into your home.
- Teach children never to handle unfamiliar animals, wild or domestic, even if they appear friendly.
- Prevent bats from entering living quarters or occupied spaces in homes, churches, schools, and other similar areas, where they might come in contact with people and pets.
- Persons who have been bitten or scratched by wild or domestic animals should seek medical attention and report the injury to the Florida Department of Health in Hillsborough County at (813) 307-8059.

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