A dog in Wainfleet has tested positive for rabies. Niagara Region Public Health staff are investigating to determine all possible exposures. So far, in 2019, there have been one bat and one dog test positive for rabies. In 2018, there was a total of 19 animals that te?sted positive for rabies (10 raccoons, seven skunks, and two bats). Residents should not approach any wild animal, including those that appear to be in distress, as they may put themselves at risk for injury or contracting an infection like rabies.
The Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry (MNRF), along with SPCAs and Humane Societies, continue to conduct increased surveillance activities for animals with rabies.
Public Health advises residents to take the following measures to protect themselves from rabies:
- Ensure pet dogs and cats have current rabies vaccinations (typically needed annually by law)
- Prevent pet dogs and cats from roaming off-leash or unsupervised
- Avoid all contact with wild animals and prevent contact between pets and wildlife
- Report wild animals exhibiting abnormal behaviour (particularly raccoons) to local animal control services:
- Welland SPCA: 905-735-1552
- Lincoln County Humane Society: 905-682-0767
- Niagara Falls Humane Society: 905-356-4404
- Fort Erie Humane Society: 905-871-2461
An animal with rabies may not display symptoms, and so all bites or scratches, however mild, from an animal must be assessed to ensure the person bitten/scratched is not at risk. Immediately report all animal bites and scratches of humans to Niagara Region Public Health at 905-688-8248, ext. 7590 or toll free 1-888-505-6074. Niagara Region Public Health is available to take calls about animal bites 24/7.
Niagara Region Public Health
905-688-8248 ext. 7219