PASCO COUNTY, Fla. -- Florida health officials in Pasco County have issued a rabies alert after a pet was exposed to a raccoon that tested positive for rabies.

Anyone in the Meadow Pointe area should be aware that rabies has been confirmed in the wild animal population, and any domestic animals that haven't been vaccinated are at risk of getting the deadly virus.

The 60-day alert is in effect for the following boundaries in Pasco County:

  • Northern boundary - State Road 56
  • Eastern boundary - New River
  • Southern boundary - Beardsley Drive/Anniston Drive
  • Western boundary - Bruce B. Downs Blvd

Health officials say owners should avoid letting their pets near raccoons, bats, foxes, skunks, otters, bobcats and coyotes.

Experts recommend keeping your pets' rabies vaccinations up-to-date, supervising them, not feeding wild animals, avoiding leaving out open garbage cans and preventing bats from entering occupied spaces.

If you are bitten by an animal, wash the wound immediately with soap and water, and seek urgent medical attention.

If you have concerns about any animals, call Pasco County Animal Services at 727-834-3216 or the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission at 1-888-404-3922.

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