In nearby Hillsborough, NJ, three animals have tested positive for rabies in recent weeks. Two rabid skunks and one rabid cat were found in the area.

Rabies is present in the local wildlife population, and is commonly carried by bats, raccoons, foxes, skunks, and sometimes groundhogs or feral cats. The disease can be transmitted by the bite of an infected animal, and is almost always fatal unless treated immediately before symptoms begin. Rabid animals may display strange or aggressive behavior, or appear overly docile.

To protect yourself and your horses, as well as other pets, make sure all of your animals have a current rabies vaccination. Do not handle any wildlife, and make sure you do not handle any animals that you are unfamiliar with unless you confirm that they are vaccinated against rabies. Keep garbage cans, feed bins, and dumpsters closed securely to prevent wildlife from being attracted to your home or barn.

If you see or come into contact with a rabid animal, notify your local police department.

Take these few safety precautions to enjoy farm life and minimize the risk of rabies infection!