Woman brings raccoon into Auburn Petco, possibly exposing others to rabies
AUBURN, Maine (WMTW) - A woman who brought a young raccoon into a pet supply store in Auburn may have exposed herself and others in the store to rabies.
The Maine Warden Service is hoping to identify the woman, seen on security video handling the raccoon and allowing others to touch and even kiss the young animal.
Wardens say the woman came to the Petco store in Auburn on Mt. Auburn Avenue at around 1:30 p.m. on Tuesday, May 23, apparently hoping to have the raccoon’s nails trimmed. Once the manager learned of the situation, he asked the woman to leave, and contacted the Maine CDC and Warden Service.
Anyone with information about the woman and the raccoon in the photos should call the Warden Service at 1-800-452-4664. It is illegal to possess a wild animal in Maine.
Anyone who was exposed to the raccoon should contact their doctor immediately. Racoons are one of the most common carriers of rabies in the state, and exposure can be deadly unless people are treated.
Rabies can spread from a rabid animal’s saliva or tissue through a bite or scratch, or gets into a person’s eyes, nose or mouth. For that reason, experts say, Mainers should never approach, feed, or handle wildlife, and instead enjoy from a distance.
The Warden Service and Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife hope to remind Mainers to “keep wildlife wild” and “if you care, leave them there.”
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