PORTSMOUTH, Va. (WAVY) – A raccoon involved in an attack with two dogs in Portsmouth tested positive for the rabies virus, the Portsmouth Health Department confirmed.

Animal Control officers responded to the incident on Warren Drive on Oct. 13. This is in the Park Manor area of the city. The raccoon died from injuries received during the altercation with the dogs. On Oct. 19, the Portsmouth Health Department was notified that the raccoon tested positive for the rabies virus.

According to the health department, the animals that were exposed to the raccoon are up to date on their rabies vaccinations. There was no human exposure to the rabid animal.

Here are some steps you can take to avoid being exposed to rabies:

  • Do not feed stray dogs or cats, or any wild animal.
  • Garbage containers should be securely sealed with lids.
  • After feeding pets, bring leftover food inside or dispose of it properly.
  • Bird food should be placed in a bird feeder inaccessible to wild animals.
  • Food stored in outbuildings (barns, open garages) should be inaccessible to animals.

If you encounter a stray animal, report it to the Portsmouth Bureau of Animal Control at 393-8430 and avoid contact with this animal. If contact occurs between any wild animal and you or your pet, contact the Portsmouth Department of Public Health at 393-8585 ext. 8585.

Keep dogs and cats confined to your property. Animals that are allowed to roam are more prone to come into contact with wild animals such as foxes and raccoons.