EAGLE POINT, Ore. - A bat found here tested positive for rabies Wednesday, prompting warnings for people and pets to steer clear of bats, whether they are dead, dying or alive.
Dogs and cats that do not have current vaccinations are subject to euthanasia or six month quarantine under Oregon law, state health officials said.
The Veterinary Diagnostics Laboratory at Oregon State University confirmed a positive for rabies in the bat.
State health officials urged pet owners to get cats and dogs current on rabies vaccinations and to stay away from bats, especially those that may be sick, flopping around, or acting otherwise unusual.
Most human exposures to bat rabies occur because someone decided to handle an obviously sick bat, health officials said.
If you suffer a scratch or bite from a bat, immediately clean the wound.
If the bat has been captured, do not crush the bat or throw it away. Intact bats can be tested for rabies, which can help health professionals determine whether or not a person needs rabies shots.
On Saturday and Sunday, residents of rural Jackson and Josephine counties near where the bat was found can attend $5 vaccination clinics for pets from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.
In an effort to increase rabies vaccination rates, $5.00 vaccination clinics are being held in the following locations on August 20 and 21 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.
The clinics will be in the ShopSmart parking lot, 205 Watkins St. in Cave Junction and the Applegate Library parking lot, 18485 N. Applegate Rd., in Applegate.
About 10 percent of the bats tested for rabies are positive. Health officials record an average of about 9 positive rabies tests in Oregon every year.
However, typically only bats that have had human or animal exposure are tested.