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For Immediate Release

June 21, 2013
Steve Merritt
Public Information Officer
Montana Department of Livestock

Rabid Bat Found at Holter Lake Campground in Lewis and Clark County

A bat captured at Holter Lake Campground in Lewis and Clark County Father’s Day weekend has tested positive for rabies at the Montana Veterinary Diagnostic Laboratory.

A camper caught the bat in a towel on June 15 because it was acting strangely. The health department submitted the bat for testing and positive results were received late Thursday.

State health officials are concerned about potential exposure to the rabid animal. Officials with Lewis and Clark City-County Health Department are working to identify any individuals who may have come into direct contact with the bat. Anyone with concern about possible human exposure should contact the health department at 447-8361, or at 459-1322 during non-business hours. People who had no direct contact with a bat are not at risk.

MDOL is working to identify and educate campers who may have had their pets with them at the campground. Anyone who was at the Holter Lake Campground between June 1 and 15 with their pet should consult their local veterinarian or MDOL at 406-444-2043.

Rabies is transmitted through infected saliva via a bite, scratch or other break in the skin. Rabies is highly preventable in domestic companion animals and livestock via an inexpensive and effective vaccine. Pet owners are encouraged to keep their animals up to date on vaccinations, and should consult with their veterinarian to determine local vaccination requirements.

This is Montana’s 10th case of rabies for 2013.

For additional information on rabies, please consult your local public health department or see: