Rabid fox bites man on Gaston Co. nature trail

by: Catherine Bilkey Updated:


GASTON COUNTY, N.C. - Health officials have a stern warning for a Gaston County neighborhood after a man was attacked by a rabid fox.

The fox bit him while he was walking on a nature trail near his house in Ranlo. Neighbors told a Channel 9 crew that they’re concerned because they use that trail daily.

“It’s odd,” Sharon Cherry said. “I’ve never seen a fox down here.”

Neighbors are now wary of the nature trails near Ranlo Avenue. Gaston County officials said a fox bit a man Tuesday while he was out walking. Officers sent the fox for testing and the results came back Thursday. The fox was rabid.

 “It is actually pretty scary especially with the dogs because they might get bit,” Katrin Comate said. “Luckily mine have rabies shots but you never you, especially when they come in the backyard.”

And that’s why Animal Control officers are going to homes in the area to tell residents about the incident and make sure their pets are up to date on rabies vaccines.

But some neighbors said they still hadn’t heard about the incident and are concerned.

“I think I would like to know to protect my children because I definitely would not be going down there for sure,” Cherry said.

The mother said she’s worried about more cases since kids in the area are often on the trails and on the sidewalks playing.

Animal Control officers said this is the first positive rabies case in Gaston County this year.

“I hope there’s not going to be anymore,” Comate said.

For further information, contact the Gaston County Police Department Animal Control Division at 704-922-8677.

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