EDGEWATER, Fla. — The Florida Department of Health in Volusia County on Monday issued a rabies alert for portions of Edgewater after a cat tested positive for rabies on Nov. 11.

What You Need To Know

  • Parts of Edgewater are under a rabies alert for 60 days

  • A cat in the area tested positive for rabies Nov. 11

  • Rabies is is fatal to warm-blooded animals and humans

  • People and pets bitten by wild animals should seek help immediately

The alert will remain in effect for 60 days. The epicenter of the rabies alert by closest intersection is South Riverside Drive and Ridgewood Avenue. Impacted areas include Read Edgewater, Mariners Gate, Friendly Shores, Pelican Cove, Pelican Cove West, Silver Ridge, and Majestic Oaks.

It encompasses the following boundaries:

  • Eastern Boundary, the Indian River
  • Northern Boundary, Indian River Boulevard, 442
  • Southern Boundary, 26th Street and 27th Street  
  • Western Boundary, Juniper Drive

All residents and visitors in Volusia County should be aware that rabies is present in the wild animal population and domestic animals are at risk if not vaccinated. Alerts are designed to increase awareness to the public, but they should not give a false sense of security to areas that have not been named as under an alert, health officials said.

Residents and visitors are advised to keep all domestic animals up to date with rabies vaccinations and to keep their pets under direct supervision so they do not come in contact with wild animals. If a pet is bitten by a wild animal, seek veterinary assistance for the animal immediately and notify the animal services division by calling Volusia County Sheriff’s Office nonemergency line at 386-248-1777.

An animal with rabies could infect other wild or domestic animals that have not been vaccinated against rabies. All domestic animals should be vaccinated against rabies and all wildlife contact should be avoided, particularly raccoons, bats, foxes, skunks, otters, bobcats and coyotes, the FDOH-Volusia said.

Rabies is a disease of the nervous system and is fatal to warm-blooded animals and humans.

People who are bitten or scratched by wild or domestic animals should seek medical attention and report the injury to the FDOH-Volusia at 386-274-0634. The only treatment for human exposure to rabies is rabies-specific immune globulin and rabies immunization. Appropriate treatment started soon after the exposure will protect an exposed person from the disease.

Residents also are urged to call local animal control to remove any stray animals from their neighborhoods. In addition, do not handle, feed, or unintentionally attract wild animals with open garbage cans or litter, and never adopt wild animals or bring them into your home.

Children should also be taught never to handle unfamiliar animals — wild or domestic —  even if they appear friendly.

Residents should also prevent bats from entering their living quarters or occupied spaces in homes, churches, schools, and other similar areas, where they might come in contact with people and pets.