Police: Raccoon who bit local 3-year-old did not have rabies

Published 12:05pm Monday, October 29, 2012

The raccoon who bit a 3-year-old girl Tuesday did not have rabies.

After biting the girl at a home along Highway 218 south of Austin, the raccoon was taken to the University of Minnesota for rabies testing, where it was determined Friday it did not have rabies, said Mower County Sheriff Terese Amazi Monday morning.

The raccoon bit the girl’s arm and left four small puncture wounds, and reportedly acted lethargic and behaved oddly. The girl was taken to Mayo Clinic Health System in Austin. According to the sheriff’s report, the father killed the raccoon and took it to the Austin Veterinary Clinic so its brain could be removed and sent for rabies testing.

Austin Police Chief Brian Krueger last week said the Austin Police Department has responded to about seven calls for raccoons in residential areas in the past week, which is much more often than normal. Residents who see raccoons in town should watch for signs of sickness, such as salivating, being unafraid of people, wandering in the daytime and appearing intoxicated.

—Matt Peterson contributed to this report.

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