A rabies outbreak in Arizona has authorities warning hikers and campers to be on the lookout for diseased animals.
Two new cases of rabies have been confirmed in wild animals in the Superstition Mountains in Arizona near Phoenix, prompting a major alert to the area. Health officials in Pinal County are warning hikers and campers who frequent the Superstition Mountains Wilderness Area to be on the lookout for animals showing signs of being rabid.
Dead and aggressive animals have also been spotted in the area, suggesting that it is a large scale problem in the area. The three rabid animals that have been confirmed were two foxes and a bat, out of a total of 134 confirmed reports so far this year in the state.
The most common rabid animal is the bat, followed by foxes and skunks. Hikers and campers who brings pets with them should make sure the animals are vaccinated and on a leash. Rabies is a potentially deadly disease that causes inflammation of the brain and spinal cord.
“From the reports we have been getting from hikers in the area, it looks like we have an increase of rabies in wild animals,” stated Pinal County Epidemiologist Graham Briggs. “Two of the cases have been confirmed, but park officials have reported seeing dead animals along with aggressive animals on the trails.”