What do I do if an animal bites me?

The first thing to do if you are bitten by an animal is to wash the wound with soap and water for at least 15 minutes. If the animal is rabid this will help wash out some of the virus. Do this right away. Also make a note of what animal bit you, if it was acting strangely, and where the animal went. Then contact your healthcare provider, Tri-County Health Department, animal control and/or Colorado Parks and Wildlife.

If the animal that bit you is wildlife it can be captured and tested for rabies so you will know if you are at risk and need to be vaccinated for rabies. If the animal is a domestic animal or livestock it can be quarantined and watched to see if it becomes ill from rabies. Many people are bitten by animals each year, and very few of those animals are rabid. However, rabies is a very serious disease and you should consult with your local health department to see if they recommend rabies post-exposure prophylaxis for you.

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