Public health warning issued after imported pet found to be carrying rabies-like virus
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Public health warning issued after imported pet found to be carrying rabies-like virus

A PUBLIC health warning has been issued after a pet imported into Ireland was found to be carrying a rabies-like virus.

Dog, cat and ferret owners living in the Cork region are being advised to monitor the health of their pets and report any unusual behaviour to the authorities.

It comes after the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine (DAFM) was alerted to the presence of a sable which had been exposed to lyssavirus.

A virus known to share similarities with rabies, the sable underwent testing to determine the potential risk to the public.

The sable was subsequently euthanised after testing failed to effectively rule out a possible rabies infection.

Several people who are thought to have come into contact with the animal have subsequently undergone screening tests on behalf of the government working in conjunction with the HSE.

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Thankfully those results have all come back negative.

However, government officials remain wary of the potential spread of the virus to other animals in the Cork region.

This comes despite the likelihood of any further spread being low.

Any members of the public with concerns or reports of animals acting erratically in the region are being encouraged to contact the DAFM Regional Office in Cork on 021 4851400.