Rabid Bat Discovered in Southeast Boise 

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It's not extraordinary to discover a bat in Boise, but the latest discovery of a bat that has tested positive for rabies has health officials urging the public to take extra caution.

Officials with the Idaho Department of Health and Welfare said the bat was discovered in a residential area in southeast Boise, the first of the year in Idaho to test positive positive for rabies. The disease can trigger fatal illness, and the public is urged to immediately contact a health care provider if they're bitten or scratched by a bat.

Last year in Idaho, 11 bats and one skunk tested positive for rabies, two of them in Ada County. Between 1999 and 2014 an average of 16 bats, or 10.6% of bat submissions, tested positive for rabies. In Idaho, the Idaho Bureau of Laboratories is the only facility that tests animals for rabies.

One particular warning that a bat may be carrying rabies is if there is daytime activity, which is unusual behavior for healthy bats.

Health officials remind the public to make sure that their dogs, cats and horses are up to date on their rabies vaccines. Homes should also be secure of bats by plugging up holes in siding and make certain that screens and windows are tight.

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