Bobcat suspected of attacking woman last week had rabies

Published by The Bee News

August 18, 2023

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A bobcat suspected of being the same one that bit and clawed a woman last week near the Atherton Acres community in the Hualapai Mountains foothills has tested positive for rabies.

The victim and a friend were approached by the bobcat the evening of Aug. 9 while out for a walk. As they backed away, the bobcat clawed the victim’s leg and bit her other leg. The victim self transported to the Kingman Regional Medical Center for treatment.

A bobcat described as aggressive was caught in the area by Arizona Game and Fish Department officers the next day, euthanized, and sent to the state health lab for rabies testing, which came back positive.

Bobcat attacks are not common, but when they do occur, rabies is often involved. Here are some tips on precautions people can take to avoid exposure to rabies:

Enjoy wildlife from a distance and keep your pets away from them.
Do not pick up, touch, or feed wild or unfamiliar animals, especially sick or wounded ones.

Vaccinate all dogs and cats against rabies.

If you have been bitten or scratched, or had contact with an animal, wash the wound or area well with soap and water, and report it immediately to animal control and health officials.

Any wild animal exhibiting unusual, erratic, or aggressive behavior should be reported to the Arizona Game and Fish Department at 623-236-7201. If you or your pet is bitten, seek immediate medical or veterinary attention and contact your county public health department.

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