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DOH Advises Floridians to Avoid Contact with Bats

By Jennifer Harris

October 14, 2022

The Florida Department of Health in St. Lucie County (DOH-St. Lucie) is responding to a bat-related situation at The Landings in Tradition.

If you are exposed to a bat, which includes accidental contact, a bite or scratch, please contact DOH-St. Lucie at 772-462-3883, Monday to Friday, 8 a.m. – 5 p.m. On weekends or after hours, please call 772-462-3800.

Appropriate treatment through post-exposure prophylaxis vaccination, starting soon after exposure, will protect you from the risk of rabies. The only preventative treatment for human exposure to rabies is rabies-specific immune globulin and rabies immunization. 

DOH-St. Lucie is providing treatment to exposed individuals. DOH-St. Lucie is also working with the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission and the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services to respond to this situation.

All residents and visitors should be aware that rabies is present in the wild animal population and should avoid contact with wildlife.

Take precautions and avoid contact:

  • Do not handle, feed, or unintentionally attract wild animals with open garbage cans or litter.

  • Call your local animal control agency to remove any stray animals from your neighborhood. Port St. Lucie Animal Control at 772-871-5042.

  • Never adopt wild animals or bring them into your home.

  • Keep rabies vaccinations up to date for all pets.

  • Please keep your pets under direct supervision, so they do not come in contact with wild animals. If a wild animal bites your pet, seek veterinary assistance for the animal immediately and contact Port St. Lucie Animal Control at 772-871-5042.

  • Prevent bats from entering living quarters or occupied spaces in homes, schools, and other similar areas where they might come in contact with people and pets.

  • Information about Bats in Buildings: https://myfwc.com/conservation/you-conserve/wildlife/bats/bats-in-buildings/

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