Cumberland County family exposed to rabies

July 10, 2013 6:58:29 PM PDT
A Cumberland County family that has to receive rabies shots is speaking out to others that could be at risk.

On Monday night, the Everett family's air conditioner went out. When they went to look for a flashlight in the kitchen cabinet, they found a dead bat.

"This is after being on vacation for nine days," said Cypress Lake resident Timberly Everett. "We come in and there it is. So how did it get in my house?"

The dead bat marked Cumberland County's seventh rabies case.

"I'm sort of freaking out like 'How long has it been in the house?' What's it touched? It's on my kitchen counter. Nasty," said Everett.

The bat's brain was in such bad condition that lab results came back inconclusive, which means the county has to assume it was rabid. That prompted health officials to take action in Cypress Lakes. They went mailbox to mailbox Wednesday afternoon warning residents to have their pets' vaccinations up-to-date.

"When I think of rabid bats, I think of my cats in the backyard, and I think of Cujo and Stephen King, and that does not make me happy," said resident Lauren Fitzgerald.

Meanwhile, because the Everetts don't know when that bat got in their home and died, they will be getting their rabies shots.

"Because it was there overnight, we were there overnight, and we did not know for sure when it died," said Everett. "We're having to go through the process of getting our shots."

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