Delaware state officials are euthanizing dozens of cats found living in a Bear neighborhood for possible exposure to rabies.
On Nov. 10 a kitten living in a home in the Buckley subdivision tested positive for rabies. Other kittens in the litter died from symptoms similar to rabies. The kittens likely contracted the disease from the mother cat or from other cats in the home that roamed inside and outside, according to the Delaware Dept. of Health.
Vaccine records for the approximately 50 cats living in the colony are unavailable. Animal control has captured about 30 cats as of Friday morning. Rabies can be spread through a bite or scratch from an infected animal. Rabies is always fatal in animals and can be fatal to humans if they do not receive immediate treatment. It cannot be cured once symptoms appear.
The kitten is the eighth animal in Delaware to test positive for rabies this year.
The Department of Health reminds pet owners to keep up-to-date vaccination records and to spay and neuter pets to prevent the spread of diseases.