Worcester County Health Department urges caution concerning aggressive wildlife in Ocean City

Ocean City, Md. – Worcester County Health Department warns citizens and visitors in Ocean City to exercise caution and report immediately any aggressive wildlife, i.e. raccoons, foxes, skunks, and/or feral cats to local law enforcement/animal control. 

Since June 18 when a confirmed rabid raccoon found in the area of 125th street attacked one individual and became aggressive with two others, Worcester County Health Department has continued to receive reports of aggressive raccoons, including raccoons approaching or attacking people and pets in north Ocean City, in areas including 85th Street north to approximately 130th Street.

To date in 2013, Worcester County reports 18 confirmed positive rabid animals and 15 other animals suspected of having rabies that have had contact with people or pets. These cases have come from throughout the county, including Ocean City. The results of these incidences have included rabies treatment for exposed humans and quarantine/euthanasia for exposed pets.

Worcester County health officials request immediate reporting of any aggressive or threatening wildlife to law enforcement/animal control. This will allow a quick response to the scene in order to minimize risk to human health. Local law enforcement/animal control then contacts the health department to manage any possible human or pet exposures and determine whether rabies testing is indicated.

If a pet has contact with a wild animal, do not touch the pet with bare hands. Wounds found on an outdoor pet from an unwitnessed encounter should be treated as a possible rabies exposure and the incident reported to the health department and your veterinarian.

The health department also offers the following tips to minimize risk of rabies exposure to your family and pets:
  • Vaccinate pets and keep those vaccinations current. Maryland law requires vaccination against rabies for all dogs, cats and ferrets over 4 months of age. Rabies vaccinations (shots) have limited time of protection, so citizens should verify that their pets are CURRENTLY protected.
  •  Do not feed pets outdoors. Pet food, even the odor of it, in empty containers and on the ground draws wildlife. While looking for food is normal behavior for raccoons and foxes particularly in the spring when there are young to be fed, these animals may return to areas they frequent if they become rabid.
  • Secure trash cans and dumpster lids for the same reason outlined above. Wild animals forage for food and minimizing food sources will discourage wildlife from coming to your property.
  • Remove strays from the community. Stray cats are of particular concern, as they are competing for food with wildlife and have more opportunity for exposure to rabid wildlife, such as raccoons. Many of the fights with raccoons go unwitnessed, and are only noted after the cat becomes rabid. Cats are the most frequently identified rabid domestic animal
For more information about rabies visit our website http://worcesterhealth.org.

###
 

Substance Abuse Help

 

Zika Information

 

Rabies Information


     

WCHD News

As part of Pocomoke City’s 4th Friday on Sept. 27, the Worcester County Health Department will lead a free 1-mile fun walk through the historic downtown district. Registration begins at 5 pm and the walk starts at 5:30 pm.

Click the image below to register for the walk. 

Read more ...

The Out of the Darkness Suicide Awareness Walk. Movement of a quarter of a million people joined by local participants in Ocean City, MD.

Ocean City, MD − Suicide is the 10th leading cause of death in the United States, yet suicide can be prevented. Volunteers from Worcester County are joining the quarter of a million people who are walking in towns across the United States to draw attention to the fight for suicide prevention. The 8th annual Out of the Darkness Walk, hosted by the Worcester County Health Department (WCHD) will be held on Saturday, September 21, 2019. As in years past, walkers will gather at Caroline Street and the Boardwalk, with registration beginning at 9am. After opening remarks, the procession will walk to the Inlet, turn and walk to 5th Street, then back to Caroline Street.

Read more ...

Worcester Health partners with Ocean City Fire Department on “Safe Station” project
Station offers 24/7 access to recovery services

Ocean City, MD- Where would you go if you needed help with addiction right now? The Worcester County Health Department, in partnership with the Town of Ocean City Fire Department, has launched a “Safe Station” in Ocean City at the 15th Street Fire Station for those seeking immediate help getting into recovery. The station is open 24-hours a day, 7 days a week for any individuals seeking treatment services.

Read more ...

In the event of a storm or power outage, it is important to know safety information about food storage and operating generators. Follow the links below for tips about food and generator safety.

Read more ...

(July 31, 2019 Snow Hill, MD) – The Worcester County Health Department received notification from the State of Maryland that a mosquito pool in the Whaleyville area of Worcester County recently tested positive for Eastern Equine Encephalitis (EEE). This is the first positive test for EEE in Worcester in 2019.

Arboviruses, such as the EEE virus, are most common during the summer and fall months. The viruses are transmitted by infected mosquitoes and spread to humans, birds, horses and other animals. Since mosquitoes can breed in as little as a quarter inch of water, eliminating standing water is critical for the control of mosquito populations. Many factors impact when and where outbreaks occur, such as weather, numbers of mosquitoes that spread the virus, and human behavior.

The Worcester and Wicomico County Health Department provides the following tips to help prevent contact with mosquitoes and reduce risk of infection with EEE or other mosquito borne illnesses:

Read more ...
 Lower Shore Health Insurance Assistance Program