KYUK AM

YKHC Urges Pets Get Rabies Vaccines After Rabid Foxes Found

Apr 21, 2021

A red fox kit runs in the snow outside of Toolik Field Station, Alaska.
Credit National Science Foundation

Three foxes from three Yukon-Kuskokwim Delta communities have tested positive for rabies in recent weeks. 

The Yukon-Kuskokwim Health Corporation said that the rabid foxes were found in Nightmute, Alakanuk, and Bethel. The rabies virus is not unusual in Yukon-Kuskokwim Delta foxes. But the virus is of concern, because it is fatal if left untreated in people and unvaccinated pets.

YKHC urges anyone who is bitten or scratched by wildlife to seek medical attention immediately. The health corporation also encourages everyone to get their pets vaccinated against the virus, and to report to YKHC if a pet is bitten or scratched by wildlife, regardless of whether they’ve been vaccinated against rabies or not.

In Bethel, pets can receive rabies vaccines at the Knik Animal Clinic or from Bethel Friends of Canines. Villages can request a public health veterinarian visit their community to provide rabies vaccines.

Numbers to call to report:
YKHC Office of Environmental Health: 907-543-6420; Toll free: 1-800-478-6599
Alaska Section of Epidemiology: 907-269-8000
Bethel Police Department (non-emergency line): 907-543-3781
Alaska Department of Fish and Game: 907-543-2979

To get your pets vaccinated:
Bethel Friends of Canines (BFK9): bethelfriendsofcanines2011@gmail.com and Facebook messenger
Knik Animal Clinic: 907-543-2823
Dr. Laurie Meythaler-Mullins, Public Health Veterinarian: 907-545-4941 https://www.facebook.com/dr.laurieykvet or
email ykvet1@gmail.com

Alaska Rabies Prevention and Control Manual:
https://www.ykhc.org/wp-content/uploads/2021/04/RabiesControlManual2019.pdf