Way less cute when they give you lockjaw

Photo courtesy of ericbegin2000Although there’s a number of people in this town who could do with a good case of lockjaw, I personally think the frothing at the mouth could get distracting, not to mention a little worrisome for the tourists. So you should keep that in mind when you interact with our wildlife and when you ponder if you should keep Fido and Fluffy’s vaccinations up-to-date.

Just over the river in Arlington, a woman was bitten by a fox which turned out to be rabid. Apparently the shots you have to get now are less horrific than the traditional dozen in the belly, but personally I’d just as soon not experiment. The location where she got the bite is pretty densely populated and close enough to the District that we can be pretty confident that if there’s rabies in one place it’s also in the other.

The linked press release has some good information, though some of the advice strikes me funny.

Prevent bats from entering living quarters or occupied spaces in homes, churches, schools and other similar areas where they might come in contact with people or pets.

Personally bats don’t scare me and I’m glad to have them around eating insects, but still – nobody had to remind me to keep them out of my house.

Red fox pup ( wild ), courtesy of ericbegin2000

4 Comments so far

  1. washwords on May 16th, 2008 @ 2:05 pm

    not only was arlington’s alert a bit late… but it also elicited a giggle re: the RAPID fox on the loose.

  2. Carl Weaver (carlweaver) on May 16th, 2008 @ 2:06 pm

    I thought lockjaw came from tetanus, not rabies. I think rabies just leads to insanity, fever and eventual death. Take Edgar Allan Poe, for example.

    Good news – if you worry about rabies, PETTING POSSUMS IS PERFECTLY SAFE. They do not have the right body temperature to carry rabies, so pet away. The worst you can get is a good chomp, although my brother, who is an expert possum handler, assures me that they are sweet as kittens once picked up.

  3. Don (dc_don) on May 16th, 2008 @ 2:10 pm

    I just like the word LOCKJAW.

  4. Tom Bridge (tbridge) on May 16th, 2008 @ 2:18 pm

    The quick brown fox jumps over the lazy dog to BITE YOUR FACE AND GIVE YOU RABIES…

    Oops. Sorry, thought this was the Fox 5 10 o’clock news.

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