A bat that injured two people at the Upper Merion Swim and Tennis Club in King of Prussia last Tuesday has tested positive for rabies, the Montgomery County Health Department announced today. The animal is the county’s seventh confirmed rabies case this year.
The two people that were exposed to the bat are being treated with preventative medications so that they do not develop rabies. Once humans come down with symptoms of the deadly viral infection, there is no known effective treatment.
Officials are working with staffers at both the swim club and throughout the township to identify additional victims and are asking anyone else that may have had contact with the bat to call the county health department at 610-278-5117.
They said that those who are bitten by bats generally notice, but since
the animals have small teeth and their bite marks disappear quickly,
there’s a chance that one could slip by.
The animal was the seventh rabid animal discovered in Montgomery County since January. A second infected bat was found in Horsham, three rabid raccoons were discovered in Salford, Perkiomen and Towamencin townships and two rabid skunks were found in Upper Merion and Upper Moreland townships.
Neighboring areas have also reported rabies cases: five Delaware residents were injured last week by a rabid cat, an infected raccoon attacked a hiker in a bathroom near the Valley Green Inn last month and a fox tested positive for rabies in Radnor in April.
All residents in affected counties and beyond are urged by health department officials not to “befriend” any wild or stray animals and to vaccinate pets.