The Department of Health and Environmental Control have stated that three South Carolina residents have potentially been exposed to rabies by a cow.
A press release from DHEC stated that the victims were possibly exposed while providing general care to the cow.
The cow was taken to the University of Georgia for testing after reportedly acting ‘sick’.
Test results confirmed the cow had rabies.
South Carolina law requires pet owners to vaccinate dogs, cats, and ferrets.
The law does not require owners of agricultural animals to vaccinate for rabies, though rabies vaccines for cows, horses and sheep are available.
DHEC strongly recommends that owners of agricultural animals vaccinate (when vaccines are available):
- Any livestock that have frequent contact with humans or are used in exhibitions
- Any livestock that are particularly valuable
- Animals used for production of raw milk for human consumption
The cow is the third animal in Oconee County to test positive for rabies in 2018. There have been 66 confirmed animal cases of rabies statewide this year.
For additional information on rabies and livestock, please visit: http://www.scdhec.gov/rabies/ExoticPetsFarmAnimals/.
Residents can contact their local Bureau of Environmental Health Services’ office using DHEC’s interactive map: http://www.scdhec.gov/EAOffices. For more information on rabies visit: www.scdhec.gov/rabies or www.cdc.gov/rabies/.