Likely Rabid Possum Found in Neighborhood - - ABC13

Likely Rabid Possum Found in Neighborhood


Madison Heights, VA - Animal Control seized an aggressive possum earlier this week in Madison Heights, and officials think the possum had rabies.

Possums are nocturnal and typically out at night, but this possum was out in the middle of the day, hissing and growling at a mother and her daughter.

On Monday, Anita Drinkard and her daughter Megan stood in their driveway talking to friends when they noticed an unfamiliar face next door.

"We were standing at that tree. I glanced over to my neighbor's yard and saw a possum standing on the edge of their porch," said Megan Drinkard.

Drinkard knew something wasn't right.

"We walked over there and it started hissing and growling and trying to bite the concrete."

They noticed scratches on its face.

"On the side of its face, right at its mouth," said Megan.

"It scared us, the first thing that entered our mind was rabies, and we called Animal Control," said Anita Drinkard.

Animal Control got there within 20 minutes to get the animal. Officials can't confirm whether this possum was rabid or not but says this type of behavior is unusual.

To prevent any possibility of transmitting rabies, animal control suggests three things:

  1. Make sure your pet is vaccinated
  2. Avoid attracting wild animals, so feed your pets indoors.
  3. Make sure the lid to the outside garbage can is secure.

Drinkard still worries about the possibility of rabies. She's decided her dog and three cats will be inside for a while.

"I still won't let them out because, you just never know and I'm just too scared to let anything happen to my animals," said Anita Drinkard.

If your pet should ever be attacked by a wild animal, make sure to use gloves. Rabies can be carried in saliva.

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