A handful of sick raccoons and grey foxes over the past several months in Lamar County has promoted the Paris Police Department to issue an alert to pet owners regarding canine distemper.
“We’ve caught several raccoons per week, as well as three grey foxes recently that showed signs of being disorientated, appeared tame and were not acting normal,” said Captain Terry Bull with the Paris Police Department.
Bull said they have tested several of the animals for rabies and all the test have come back negative.
Dr. Marc White with Paris Veterinary Clinic said all the symptoms appear to show signs of canine distemper.
Canine distemper is a viral disease that affects a wide variety of animal families, including domestic and wild species of dogs, coyotes, foxes, pandas, wolves, ferrets, skunks, raccoons, and large cats, as well as pinnipeds, some primates, and a variety of other species.
“The main thing residents need to know is to not approach or touch the animal if it appears to be sick or not acting normal; especially wild animals,” said Bull. “For domestic pet owners, make sure your pets are up-to-date with their annual shots.”
General signs of canine distemper include fever, clear nasal discharge, purulent eye discharge, lethargy, anorexia, coughing, vomiting, and diarrhea.
If you see an animal, wild or domestic, acting strange or showing any signs of these symptoms, call Animal Control at 903-784-6860