For a bite-free summer, play safe around animals

Staff Report

Dogs, cats, raccoons, and other furry friends love summer weather. As both humans and animals get more active and start spending more time outside together, take steps to avoid confrontation and keep everyone safe:

• Ask the owner before you approach an animal.

• After asking permission, let an animal see and sniff you before petting it.

• Don’t approach wild or stray animals.

• Keep two eyes on children when they’re playing with pets.

• If you have a pet, make sure it is up-to-date with the rabies vaccine from a veterinarian.

• If someone gets bitten by any animal, make sure the bite is taken care of. If it’s a serious bite, take the bitten person to the emergency room.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, all dog bites include a risk of getting rabies.

“We encourage everyone to take steps to prevent animal bites, and we’re also here to help when they do happen,” said Lorain County General Health District commissioner David Covell.

Call the Lorain County General Health District at 440-322-6367 if you experience or witness an animal bite.

Workers there check up on all animal bites in the county and act as an unbiased third party in all animal bite incidents. They will check that the animal has an up-to-date rabies vaccination, make sure it is healthy, and report back to you. If you do need protection from the rabies virus, they can connect you with a vaccine.

Staff Report