A bat found at Fuji Park on Thursday tested positive for rabies, according to the Carson City Environmental Health Department, Division of Animal Services.
Anyone who may have come in contact with the bat or other wild animals at the park should contact animal services immediately at 887-2171 for more information on rabies exposure.
Rabies is a virus that is usually transmitted by a bite from a wild infected animal, such as a bat, raccoon, skunk or fox.
Children at the park on that date should also be questioned about any contact with wild animals.
"Our main concern is the children who were there," said Pat Wiggins, animal services supervisor. "Parents should ask their kids if they had any direct contact with any wild animals there. If they did, they might need our guidance."
All pets should be vaccinated for rabies starting at 4 months. Any vaccinated pets that may have been exposed to the bat, should receive a booster within five days of the exposure, or by Sept. 20. However, once an unvaccinated pet has been exposed to a rabid animal, it cannot receive the vaccination.
The symptoms of rabies typically appear at least four days after the bite occurs. But in rare cases, symptoms don't show up for more than a year.
One of the most distinctive signs of a rabies infection is a tingling or twitching sensation around the area of the animal bite. It is often accompanied by a fever, headache, muscle aches, loss of appetite, nausea and fatigue.
As the infection progresses, a child infected with rabies may develop any of the following symptoms:
• excessive movements or agitation
• bizarre or abnormal thoughts
• muscle spasms
• abnormal postures
• seizures (convulsions)
• weakness or paralysis
• extreme sensitivity to bright lights, sounds or touch
• increased production of saliva or tears
• difficulty speaking
In animals, the first sign of a rabies infection is usually a change in behavior.
Rabid animals usually stop eating and drinking and may appear to want to be left alone. After the initial onset of symptoms, the animal may become vicious or begin to show signs of paralysis.
Some rabid animals bite at the slightest provocation and others may be lethargic and difficult to arouse.
Once the animal shows signs of paralysis, the disease progresses very quickly and the animal dies.
Anyone who may have come in contact with a bat or any other wild animals at Fuji Park on Thursday, should call Carson City Animal Services at 887-2171.