Cartersville, GA:  A local raccoon testing positive for rabies has Bartow County Health Department Environmental Health Manager Lewis Tumlin reminding Bartow County pet owners to “get your pets vaccinated against rabies.”  According to Tumlin, the rabid raccoon was found “in southeast Bartow County, but people need to understand that rabies is a potential problem throughout the county.”


“Rabies is always circulating in our wild animal population, and getting your pet vaccinated against rabies is the single best way to protect your pet from rabies,” Tumlin says.  “It’s important to do it for their protection, for our protection and because it’s state law.  So get your dog or cat vaccinated.”

“Your pets and other domestic animals can be infected when they are bitten by rabid wild animals,” Tumlin explains.  “When this ‘spillover’ rabies occurs in domestic animals, the risk to humans is increased.  We require pets to be vaccinated against rabies to prevent them from acquiring the disease from wildlife and possibly transmitting it to you.  So the rabies vaccination protects you, too.”


People with pets should:


  • visit your veterinarian with your pet on a regular basis and keep rabies vaccinations up-to-date for all cats, ferrets, and dogs,


  • maintain control of your pets by keeping cats and ferrets indoors and keeping dogs under direct supervision,


  • spay or neuter your pets to help reduce the number of unwanted pets that may not be properly cared for or vaccinated regularly and


  • call animal control to remove all stray animals from your neighborhood since these animals may be unvaccinated or ill.


For more information about rabies vaccination, contact the Bartow County Health Department at 770-387-2614 or Bartow County Animal Control at 770-387-5153.  For additional information about rabies, visit