EAST AMWELL TOWNSHIP (Hunterdon County) – The Hunterdon County Heath Department has issued a public health alert after a stray cat found in East Amwell Township tested positive for rabies.
A friendly female black and brown tabby cat that had a litter approximately 4 weeks ago tested positive for rabies on September 28 and was in the area of Frontage Road and Old York Road near the intersection of Route 202/31 located in the Ringoes section of the township, health officials said.
Area residents who may have had contact with this cat any time between September 9 and September 23 should notify their primary care physician immediately or the Hunterdon Medical Center Emergency Room to discuss concerns of possible exposure and the need for post exposure prophylaxis treatment, health officials said.
It is important to remember not to pick up stray animals at any time. Saliva from infected animals should be considered infectious, health officials said.
Rabies is a deadly disease caused by a virus. The virus is found in the saliva of a rabid animal and is transmitted by a bite, or possibly by saliva of an open cut or the eyes. The disease is transmitted from animals to human or from animals to other animals. Left untreated, humans can be protected by receiving rabies prophylaxis after exposure.
How can you protect yourselves from rabies?
- Vaccinate your pets against rabies and keep vaccinations up-to-date
- Do not feed or touch wild animals
- Avoid contact with strays or pets other than your own
All owners of cats, dogs and livestock should have the vaccination against rabies through their veterinarian or through municipal rabies clinics. For a listing of upcoming free rabies clinics, click here.
For more information, call 908-788-1351. After hours and on weekends, call 908-788-1202. To reach the East Amwell Township Animal Control Officer Carolyn Murphy, call 609 915 9013.