A second skunk in Pueblo has been confirmed to have rabies.
Public health officials in Pueblo announced that there have now been two skunks since September that have tested positive with rabies, in two separate parts of the city. The skunk was found in the Belmont neighborhood in Pueblo. Residents are encouraged to be vigilant, as health officials say that skunks often come into contact with household pets.
Dr. Christine Nevin-Woods, the Public Health Director at the Pueblo City-County Health Department, says that owners need to make sure their pets avoid contact with bats, skunks and foxes, and keep pets on leashes at all time.
"This rabid skunk is the second to be found so close to housing in a neighborhood," Nevin-Woods said. "This increases the chances that rabies will spread to people and their pets."
Owners are also encouraged to get their pets vaccinated, or re-vaccinated if their previous vaccination has expired. Pets without up-to-date vaccinations have a much higher chance of infection if exposed to rabies. Rabies is almost always fatal.
Public health officials stress that it is critical for people to seek medical care immediately if bitten or exposed to a rabid animal.