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Sick fox found along Washington Blvd tests positive for rabies

Fox in an Arlington yard (file photo)

Arlington has another fox rabies case — maybe two.

A sick fox captured by animal control along Washington Blvd, between East Falls Church and Westover, has tested positive for rabies, according to an announcement from the Animal Welfare League of Arlington. Another sick fox was seen on video, taken in the neighborhood surrounding Wakefield High School, but has not been located, AWLA said.

Those incidents follow AWLA’s warning last week of a potentially rabid fox in the Arlingwood neighborhood, as well as a similar warning in early February after an aggressive fox attacked pets and, reportedly, at least one person in the Gulf Branch neighborhood.

ALWA, which handles animal control for Arlington County, said that residents should remain vigilant, take precautions with pets, and contact the animal control office immediately if they see “any animal that appears sick, lethargic, disoriented, or aggressive.”

More from AWLA, below.

Confirmed rabid fox in Highland Park neighborhood: on Wednesday April 27th, 2022 in the afternoon Arlington County Animal Control received a call about a sick fox in the 6200 block of Washington Boulevard. The fox had neurological signs consistent with rabies, and was captured and removed by Animal Control after exposing a domestic pet. The fox was tested and came back clinically positive for rabies.

Additionally, Animal Control was recently provided footage of a potentially sick fox in the Claremont neighborhood. That footage was provided 4 days after the event, and therefore no fox has been located and no other sightings have occurred at this time. Rabies is a disease that people and animals can catch from the bite or scratch of infected animals. It is fatal if medical care is not given promptly. If you, your child, or your pet may have come into contact with this fox or any wild animal, please call Arlington County Animal Control at 703-931-9241 immediately, after hours please stay on the line to speak with the answering service who will alert an officer.

Residents are encouraged to:

  • Ensure pets are up to date on their rabies and distemper vaccines.
  • Keep dogs on a leash at all times and keep cats inside.
  • Check backyards before letting pets or children outside and monitor them at all times.
  • Do not approach or feed any wild animals.
  • Feed pets inside.
  • Remove wildlife attractants from yards, such as unsecured garbage cans, open containers of food, and compost.

Animal Control is also urging all residents in Arlington County to remain vigilant and if they see any animal that appears sick, lethargic, disoriented, or aggressive to stay away from the animal and call Animal Control immediately: 703-931-9241. If you come across a deceased rabies vector animal (including cats, dogs, foxes, raccoons, bats and groundhogs) in your yard or a public space please also contact Animal Control promptly and do not handle the animal.

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