ROCK SPRINGS — A suspicious bat found on a sidewalk in Rock Springs has tested positive for rabies.
According to Sweetwater County Public Health Officer Dr. Jean Stachon, the bat was found last week laying on the sidewalk in the middle of the day.
Stachon said Rock Springs Animal Control responded to the call and didn’t think the bat had any contact with humans or animals. After capturing the bat, animal control had it tested for rabies. The test came back positive.
According to the Centers for Disease Control, “Rabies is a fatal, but preventable viral disease. It can spread to people and pets if they are bitten or scratched by a rabid animal. Rabies can be prevented by vaccinating pets, staying away from wildlife, and seeking medical care after potential exposures before symptoms start.”
Dr. Stachon wants to encourage residents with pets to make sure their pets are not only up to date on their rabies shots, but other vaccinations.
She said if residents come across a bat that appears suspicious they should not approach it, touch it, or poke it, but call animal control.
“Bats usually come out at night and don’t want to be around people,” Dr. Stachon said.
Even though one bat has tested positive for rabies, Dr. Stachon said there is no reason for residents to fear bats.
“Don’t be afraid of bats,” Dr. Stachon said. “They’re good for us.”
According to the Wyoming Department of Heath’s website, “Bats are an important part of our ecosystem in Wyoming and can be beneficial for insect control.”
For more information on rabies click here.