February 17, 2006
Texas Department of State Health Services (DSHS) and Lockhart Animal Control officials are trying to locate anyone who may have come in contact with a bat at the Lockhart Apartments on Wilson Street in Lockhart earlier this week. The bat tested positive for rabies.
Several children were seen playing with the bat. But officials do not know if others came in contact with the rabid mammal.
DSHS officials said anyone exposed needs to be evaluated to determine if post-exposure treatment is needed to prevent the development of the deadly illness.
Anyone who may have been exposed, or their parents, should contact a physician or call the DSHS clinic in Lockhart at 512-398-7105 or Lockhart Animal Control at 512-398-4401.
Calls over the holiday weekend may be made to the DSHS regional office in Temple,
The bat was tested by the DSHS laboratory in Austin.
Rabies is almost always fatal in humans once symptoms occur. But a series of post-exposure shots can prevent rabies if given in time.
Health officials continually warn that bats, dead or alive, should not be handled.
(News Media: for more information contact Tom Sidwa, D.V.M., DSHS Zoonosis Control Branch, 512-458-7255; or Doug McBride, DSHS Press Officer, 512-458-7524.)