To reach wild animals with rabies vaccine, the Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry (MNRF) is distributing bait packs in Wellington and Dufferin Counties from July to October this year.
Baiting will occur by hand in urban green spaces. In forested and agricultural areas, the bait will be dropped by helicopter or yellow twin otter aircraft. When a raccoon, fox or skunk bites into the bait and swallows the vaccine it should develop immunity to rabies in about two weeks.
The rabies vaccine baits come in an army-green colour blister pack. Baits should not be moved unless they are near where children play. If you have to move a bait packet, place a plastic bag over your hand to keep your scent off the bait and move it to an area where wildlife might find it. The vaccine is not harmful to people or pets, but if one is ingested (eaten) you should contact your doctor or veterinarian as a precaution.
Locally, several animals have tested positive for rabies since 2017. These include two skunks in Elora and one in Mapleton, three bats in Guelph and one bat in the Belwood area.
Learn more about rabies in our area and how to protect your pets and family from this fatal disease.
Photo courtesy of the Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry.