The suspected rabid fox that authorities have been seeking in northern Forsyth County was apparently killed by a resident of the same subdivision where it had attacked a maintenance worker and bit two dogs earlier that day.
According to the Forsyth County Sheriff’s Office, a resident of the Hampton subdivision off Ga. 400 notified authorities Friday that he had killed a fox that went after his dogs Tuesday afternoon.
Not knowing that a rabies alert had been issued for the fox, the resident got rid of the critter’s body before the sheriff’s office could claim it.
“Because the fox was disposed of before we were ever notified, it was not tested to see why it was acting aggressive,” Sheriff’s Lt. David Waters said.
“We are still warning people to contact us immediately if they observe or come in contact with any wildlife that may be acting aggressive or does not flee from humans.”
According to the sheriff’s office, the first incident occurred about 6 a.m. Tuesday on a golf course. The worker was able to fight off the fox before it could bite him. Later that day, between 10 a.m. and noon, what is believed to be the same fox bit two dogs in an area near the subdivision’s clubhouse.
Both dogs were current on their rabies shots, according to authorities, and are being quarantined as a precaution. Forsyth County has had two confirmed cases of rabies this year. Hall County has seen 21 cases.
Waters urged anyone who spots an aggressive fox or other animal in North Forsyth to call 911. In addition, he said, residents should keep a close watch on children when outdoors and ensure their pets are current on their rabies shots.
If you see an animal acting abnormally in Hall County, you can also contact Hall County Animal Services at 770-531-6830 or during nonworking hours call Hall County Dispatch at 770-536-8812.
Animal owners are encouraged to vaccinate their pets and livestock for rabies. Vaccines are available for $10 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday through Friday at the Hall County Animal Shelter at 1688 Barber Road in Gainesville and from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Monday through Friday at the Humane Society of Northeast Georgia at 845 W. Ridge Road in Gainesville. Vaccines are also available from local veterinarians.