Tuesday, September 18, 2018
Health

Rabies alert issued for Tampa neighborhood after cat attacks three people

TAMPA — A rabies alert has been issued and three people are receiving treatment because of an unprovoked attack Tuesday by a rabid cat near Sligh and Manhattan Avenues in Tampa.

The Florida Department of Health issued the 60-day alert Saturday for an area bounded by Waters Avenue, Hillsborough Avenue, Dale Mabry Highway and Veterans Expressway.

The brown tabby, domestic short-hair cat was later found near the 4500 block of W Knollwood St. and tests confirmed it was rabid. The three victims are related. The Health Department said in a news release it did not know whether others had contact with the cat.

Anyone within the boundaries who was bitten, scratched, or exposed to the saliva of a cat fitting the description should contact the Health Department at (813) 307-8059 and visit a health care provider, according to the news release.

So far in 2018, the Health Department has identified seven rabid animals in Hillsborough County — five cats, two bats and one raccoon. They exposed 18 people and four domestic dogs to the disease.

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