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    HomeNewsWorld Rabies Day: All for One, One Health for All

    World Rabies Day: All for One, One Health for All

    The Santa Barbara County Public Health Department is joining the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the World Health Organization (WHO) in recognizing September 28, 2023 as World Rabies Day. The year’s theme “Rabies: All for One, One Health for All” focuses on collaboration across human, animal and environmental sectors to reach the “Zero by 30” goal of reducing rabies deaths in people to zero globally by 2030.

    Rabies is a preventable viral disease that is most often transmitted through the bite of a rabid animal. Although human rabies cases are extremely rare in the United States due to the work of public health and veterinary medicine, it is important to talk to a healthcare provider if you have been bitten or scratched by an unfamiliar animal. Additionally, if you come in close contact with a bat, seek medical advice to be safe.

    “Many times, animal bites or scratches go unreported. It is important to report these incidents, especially if the animal has symptoms of rabies including agitation, biting and snapping, drooling, acting disoriented, appearing partially paralyzed, or generally acting sick”, shared Henning Ansorg, MD, Public Health Officer. Please report these incidents online at https://www.countyofsb.org/1396/Report-an-Animal-Bite.

    Rabies can pass from wild animals, commonly bats and skunks in Santa Barbara County, to pets. Although transmission to humans is rare, the disease is nearly always fatal.

    Community members can protect their pets by keeping them indoors at night, walking them with a leash, scanning the yard for wildlife before allowing them outside, and not leaving food outside that will attract wildlife. If you notice a typically nocturnal animal that is active during the day and acting abnormally, please contact Santa Barbara County Animal Services at (805) 681-5285 for assistance.

    Rabies is a preventable disease that can be avoided by leaving all wildlife alone and vaccinating your family pets. Visit Rabies Prevention Behind the Scenes | World Rabies Day | CDC for more information.

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