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Contact: Emily Clark, 580-622-7263
Contact: Dan Winings, 580-622-7282
SULPHUR, OK– During the week of June 10, park rangers at Chickasaw National Recreation Area were notified by a visitor of a sick gray fox near Bromide Pavilion. The fox was caught and euthanized, subsequently tested for disease, and found to be infected with the rabies virus. It is never advisable to feed or handle an animal that is not vaccinated, and it is especially important to heed this sound advice at this time.
Wild animals most commonly affected with rabies in Oklahoma include skunks, bats, and occasionally other mammals such as foxes, dogs, cats, cattle or horses. The earliest visible symptoms of the rabies virus in animals include aggression or very passive behavior, and the later stages can include foaming of the mouth, disorientation, staggering, and eventual death. Animals with rabies are contagious a few days before symptoms develop. It is best to stay away from any wild or feral animal in order to minimize potential exposure to this virus.
Do not feed or handle wildlife or other feral animals in Chickasaw National Recreation Area. Keep all pets on a leash while in the park. Do not touch any sick, dying or dead animal. If you find a sick or dead animal in the park, please contact the park immediately by calling (580)622-7234.
If you are bitten by a wild animal or have questions about your contact with a wild animal, contact your local health department or the Acute Disease Service of the Oklahoma State Department of Health at 405-271-4060
The park remains open and normal visiting hours remain unchanged. Please enjoy your time at Chickasaw National Recreation Area. Remember to keep yourself and your pets safe.