Lanett woman attacked by a racoon

Published 12:34 pm Monday, July 8, 2024

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LANETT — A Lanett woman is undergoing precautionary treatments against rabies after having been attacked in her yard by a raccoon on July 4th.

South Jennings Avenue resident Gerry Slaughter was scratched on her lower left leg and upper left thigh at approximately 10:30 in the morning.

“I went out to my car and two raccoons were standing next to it,” she told The Valley Times-News. “one of them jumped at me and scratched me twice on the leg.”

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The two raccoons then fled toward a wooded area and were joined by a third one as they made their escape.

Slaughter has lived on South Jennings for many years but this is the first time she’d ever had close contact with raccoons.

There is danger in being bitten or scratched by a raccoon that’s been living in the wild. Raccoons are one of the most likely of mammals to carry rabies, but not all of them have it. In one study, as many as one in five raccoons tested positive as a carrier of rabies.

Knowing of the risk involved, Slaughter went to the emergency room at EAMC-Lanier Hospital for treatment. She received anti-rabies shots in each arm along with a tetanus shot during that visit. She will have a third such shot this Thursday and a a final one on the following Thursday.

“I just want people in the local area to be aware of this and to be careful when coming into contact with a raccoon,” Slaughter said. “If something like this happens to you, be on the safe side and seek immediate treatment.”