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Wake County urges caution after beaver attacks two at Falls Lake

Posted August 2, 2012

Wake County officials on Thursday were urging residents and visitors to be careful around wildlife after a beaver recently attacked two people at Falls Lake.

The animal was shot but could not be captured for rabies testing because it sank in the lake, officials said. Those who were near it are undergoing treatments to reduce their chances of contracting the virus.

“We want to take every precaution to prevent these individuals from contracting rabies,” Wake County Community Health Director Sue Lynn Ledford said in a statement. “Anyone visiting Falls Lake and the surrounding areas should be cautious, as rabies is frequently spread from one animal to another, and there may be more infected animals in the area.”

Anyone who sees an animal behaving oddly should call Wake County Animal Control at 919-212-7387. In Cary, call 919-319-4517 ; in Garner, call 919-772-8896; in Holly Springs, call 919-557-9111; in Raleigh, call 919-831-6311.

Officials offered the following tips:

  • Do not approach animals you do not know.
  • Ensure your pets have a current rabies vaccination. Outdoor pets should be kept inside until they receive booster vaccines.
  • Do not feed stray or unknown animals.
  • Do not leave trash or food outside, unless in a trash can with a tight-fitting lid.
  • Do not leave pet food out overnight.
  • Do not leave pets outdoors unattended.
  • If a pet comes in contact with an animal that might be rabid, contact a veterinarian immediately.

Information about rabies and upcoming Wake County vaccination clinics can be found on the Wake County Animal Center website.


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  • Mom2two Aug 2, 2012

    Interesting. Never heard of a beaver attack. Any mammal can carry rabies, but you rarely hear of any animal other than a raccoon, fox or a bat (and pets). Maybe they'll find it soon, since once it exhibits symptoms, it doesn't last much longer.

  • MARX Aug 2, 2012

    I'd love to know where in Falls lake...I've seen my share of them while out on my kayak, but it's almost always in shallow water.

  • Obamacare Aug 2, 2012

    well, it WAS out in the open a few minutes ago when it was chasing me and the dogs down the street!!!!!!!

    I lol'd when I read this.

  • Whatthehey Aug 2, 2012

    Well, close to "no one": actually, in June 2011, 8-year-old Precious Reynolds became the 3rd American—and 6th person ever to survive without the vaccination series — they were saved by the Milwaukee Protocol. Even if not rabid, beavers can be intimidating; adult males are rather large and powerful critters!

  • luxurytravel Aug 2, 2012

    We called Wake County Animal Control to report a possible rabid fox, and they told us they could do nothing unless the animal was out in the open....well, it WAS out in the open a few minutes ago when it was chasing me and the dogs down the street!!!!!!!

  • KHawk Aug 2, 2012

    I hope they have medical insurance - rabies shots at Rex at $12k for the series. (No alternative - no one has ever survived the manifestation of rabies). My son's insurance stopped at $2500 for the rabies treatment that we had to get for my son after a Neuse River beaver bite. (same thing - shot the beaver but couldn't retrieve it). Trying to help him save his credit rating as a result of this as a next step.

  • Corporal Snark Aug 2, 2012

    I only clicked on this for the jokes and y'all didn't disappoint. ;)

  • promethazine codeine lover Aug 2, 2012

    I wonder if the beaver really had rabies, or if some people were just messing with it. Oh well :)