The Oneida County Health Department says a rabid racoon has been found in the Rome area.

Officials say a couple saw the racoon fighting with one of their dogs outside of their home.

The dog was bitten in the face by the racoon before the owner separated the two animals and the racoon was killed.  The racoon tested positive for rabies.

They say another dog was also outside but had no known contact with the racoon.

The Health Department says the dogs were given booster shots because they were both current on rabies shots.

Health department officials say there are things you can do to reduce the risks rabies for your pets:

  • First, visit your veterinarian with your pet on a regular basis and keep rabies vaccinations up-to-date for all cats, ferrets, and dogs.
  • Second, maintain control of your pets by keeping cats and ferrets indoors and keeping dogs under direct supervision.
  • Third, spay or neuter your pets to help reduce the number of unwanted pets that may not be properly cared for or vaccinated regularly.
  • Finally, call animal control to remove all stray animals from your neighborhood since these animals may be unvaccinated or ill.