IPSWICH, MA (WHDH) - IPSWICH — Town residents have been warned about a fox in the area after three residents were attacked by one that tested positive for rabies.
Animal Control officers were unable to locate the fox that attacked the locals on Saturday. The fox was later killed by another resident who noticed the animal attacking his chickens.
Another aggressive fox was killed by police on Monday.
The state confirmed that the fox was rabid. The three victims attacked have been notified and are now receiving medical treatment.
Rabies is usually spread from animal to animal, but a person can contract the virus if saliva enters the body. The virus causes brain inflammation and swelling, also known as acute encephalitis, which is almost always deadly for warm-blooded hosts.
According to The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the most common hosts for rabies are bats, raccoons, fox, groundhogs, and skunks.
About 55,000 people die annually from rabies around the world. Only one to two of those deaths happen in the US.
It is important to treat any type of attack by a wild animal seriously. Stay away from all wild animals in order to avoid the virus. If you see a wild animal acting abnormally, contact animal control immediately.
A few symptoms of Rabies include:
The Ipswich police want to remind residents that seeing a fox during the day is not abnormal. They are not nocturnal animals like raccoons.
However, fox are typically scared of people. If one approaches you, or is aggressive, then you should call the Ipswich Police Department. Police also want to remind residents to leash their pets, cover trash, and ensure your pets are up to date on their vaccinations.
Anyone with questions should contact Ipswich Police at 978-356-4343.
(Copyright (c) 2017 Sunbeam Television. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)