Raccoon Baiting August 3-17th, watch pets thru 24th.

Over the past 17 years, there has been a significant reduction in human and pet exposures to rabies throughout Allegheny County.  This is largely due to the efforts of the rabies vaccination program for wild raccoons spearheaded by the United States Dept. of Agriculture’s Wildlife Services (USDA), who the Allegheny County Health Department (ACHD) partners with for this massive effort.  This year, employees and volunteers of ACHD and the USDA will be distributing vaccine-containing baits from August 3rd through August 17th across Allegheny County.  Baits will be delivered by hand and from vehicles in every municipality of the County.

The two types of bait are:

1) a plastic sachet (looks like a ketchup packet) coated in fish meal

2) a plastic sachet enclosed in a fish meal block.

The fish scent attracts the raccoons who consume the bait and vaccine, resulting in the development of antibodies to the rabies virus.



The risk of adverse effects to humans and animals due to exposure to the vaccine is minimal, but the public is urged to avoid contact with the bait if possible.  If a stray bait must be moved, it should be picked up using rubber or latex gloves or a shovel.  They are also asking for dogs to be kept on a leash, indoors, or confined to their property as much as possible during baiting and the week after. Although these baits will not harm your dog, if they eat too many they can get an upset stomach and/or diarrhea.

For additional information on the baiting program, visit www.achd.net/raccoon.






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