JANESVILLE, Wis. - The Rock County Health Department announced that a bat submitted to the state lab tested positive for rabies.
Public Health Officer Karen Cain said in a release Friday that this is the second bat to be confirmed rabid in the county.
The first rabid bat came from the Footville area. The second is from a downtown neighborhood in Janesville. In both cases, family pets were exposed, the Rock County health department said.
Rabies is an infectious disease that affects the nervous system in mammals. Wild mammals like raccoons, skunks, foxes and coyotes can transmit rabies, but in most cases of human rabies in the United States, bats have transmitted the disease, the health department added, citing the Center for Disease Control and Prevention.
Cain said pet owners can get their animals vaccinated against rabies, even if they're an indoor pet, since bats can invade homes.
Visit the department website for more information on the disease and prevention at www.co.rock.wi.us/in-your-home/rabies-information.