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Man, 55, Bitten By Rabid Bat In Riverside

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RIVERSIDE (CBS)  — A 55-year-old man in Riverside has been bitten by a rabid bat, a spokesman for county Animal Services said Saturday.

Meanwhile, a second rabid bat was found near Hemet.

The health agency received the positive test results for rabies on Friday, according to John Welsh of Animal Services.

The man was cleaning a pool in Riverside Wednesday when he was bitten. Welsh said the man is being treated at a nearby hospital.

In Hemet, a dog was reportedly playing with a sick bat and was bitten at a home on Tuesday. The dog had its current rabies vaccination, but will need to be quarantined on the property for at least six months, Welsh said.

“While not extraordinary to find rabies in bats, we believe our cases, coupled with the recent cases in San Bernardino County, is a good time to remind the public to be cautious around bats,” said Allan Drysys, Riverside County chief veterinarian.

“Should anyone encounter a bat, live or dead, don’t touch it,” Drysys said. “Let a trained professional, such as our animal control officers, remove and impound the bat. We will then get it tested.”

On Thursday, San Bernardino officials issued their own rabies alert after five bats tested positive for the disease.

One of the bats was dropped off by the Health Department in Chino by a man who didn’t leave his name. Officials are concerned he might have been exposed to the deadly disease.

(©2012 CBS Local Media, a division of CBS Radio Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. Wire services contributed to this report.)

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