HANOVER — Two raccoons captured and destroyed by police in rural neighborhoods last week have tested positive for rabies.
Another raccoon and a fox were also euthanized last week when police responded to reports of the animals acting strangely.
“I think what it tells you is we’re sort of in a rabies season again,” said Hanover police Lt. Michael Evans.
The two raccoons were tested after having contact with pets.
“I think in both cases the animal actually got in a tussle with these raccoons,” he said.
Both dogs were up to date on their rabies shots and were referred to their veterinarians for booster shots, Evans said.
Pet owners should keep their animals’ vaccines up to date and should report any wild animals acting strangely in their yards or neighborhoods, Evans said.
“If you see a sick-looking raccoon, skunk or fox in the yard, obviously don’t let your dog out,” Evans said.
Raccoons are nocturnal animals, typically not seen during the day. They are also usually timid around cars, people and their pets.
“You can see the symptoms of a sick-acting raccoon; they are lethargic, they are stumbling around. ... They actually look like they are drunk,” Evans said.
Any strange behavior should be reported, he said.
“People obviously shouldn’t approach wild animals. If it is in their yard and the animal doesn’t leave and they don’t think it’s right, they should call their local police or animal control officer,” Evans said.