The disease can spread to people and pets through bites and scratches. The county urged pet owners to ensure their animals are current on their rabies vaccinations. According to the National Association of State Health Veterinarians, unvaccinated dogs and cats exposed to a rabid animal must be strictly quarantined for four months and vaccinated one month prior to being released, the county said.
Untreated, rabies in humans is almost always fatal. Early symptoms of rabies in people include fever, headache and general weakness or discomfort.
Anyone who thinks they have been exposed to rabies should immediately seek medical care, then contact the Gwinnett County Health Department at 770-339-4260 and ask for the epidemiologist on call. To report the animal and have it picked up, call the Gwinnett County Animal Welfare and Enforcement Bite Office at 770-339-3200 ext. 5576; after hours, call 770-513-5700.