FREDERICK, Md. (WJZ) — A stray cat has tested positive for rabies, according to the Frederick County Health Department.

The health department received a report from the Maryland Department of Health Rabies Laboratory on January 2 that a stray cat collected from Mains Lane, Frederick, tested positive for the rabies virus.

The cat is an older black domestic short-haired female that appeared to be sick.

The cat was picked up by Animal Control on January 2.

The Health Department recommended that any people who may have had contact with this cat since December 19, 2018, consult their health care provider and notify the FCHD’s Community Health Services Office at 301-600-1717.

Rabies is a viral disease that primarily infects mammals and is spread through the saliva of an infected animal- usually through a bite.

Symptoms of rabies in animals may include fear of water, excessive salivation, not eating or drinking, limping, unusually friendly or aggressive behavior, or other atypical behaviors such as nocturnal animals out in the daytime.

The disease is nearly always fatal to humans.

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