A woman from New Jersey strangles and kills the fox that attacked her in her own yard. Hers is the first case of human attack by a rabid animal in the county this year.
Rabid Fox Strangled
On July 18, 52-year-old Tammy Dubois of Pittsgrove, New Jersey, was attacked by a fox right in her own yard. Her ordeal began just shortly after she heard rustling sounds coming from the bushes while she was walking in her yard to go to her garden. At first, she thought it was a cat or dog, but then a fox ran out and bit her multiple times in the leg.
According to Dubois, she tried to escape into her house but could not, as the fox was gnawing on her leg. Knowing she had to do something to escape, she grabbed the fox’s neck with one hand and its snout with the other and began squeezing. Although the fox struggled for a while, it soon went limp from being choked. She then notified the neighbors of what had just happened, washed and bandaged her bleeding legs, and called her husband, who took her to the hospital to get treated.
Dubois, who says she does not like to kill anything, told local news that she could not do anything else to get the fox away from her, as there were none of the usual gardening tools on her porch on the day of the attack.
Animal Control eventually picked up the fox’s body and later confirmed that it was indeed rabid.
Rabies In The United States
Salem County officials confirmed that the attack on Dubois was the first case of human attack in the county this year, as the other two cases involved rabid animals biting other animals. In addition, the fox that attacked Dubois is also the first fox to be confirmed rabid in the state of New Jersey this year.
Apart from the fox, as of June 30, the New Jersey Department of Health has confirmed 72 rabies cases, which involve 49 rabid raccoons, 13 skunks, nine bats, nine cats, and one groundhog.
Each year, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention collects vital information on human and animal rabies cases from state health departments in order to create a summary report on rabies cases in the country. The latest report comes from 2015 data, wherein there were said to be 5,508 rabies cases in animals and three human rabies cases, the total number of which shows an 8.7 percent decrease in rabies cases compared to 2014, when there were over 6,000 reported rabies cases.
Of the 2015 cases, wild animals accounted for 92.4 percent of the reports, with bats, raccoons, skunks, and foxes, respectively, were the most frequently reported rabid animals.