Huron Kinloss releases information on distemper in raccoons

(File photo courtesy of © Can Stock Photo / rabbit75can)

The Township of Huron Kinloss has been fielding some calls about raccoons in residential areas, and is offering residents some tips on how to handle the situation.

A media release says it is important to leave wildlife alone whenever possible. Sometimes a disease called Distemper can be spread between dogs and wildlife.

Raccoons with distemper move slowly and stumble as they walk and lose their fear of humans. they could seem blind and confused or wander aimlessly. TheY might become aggressive if cornered.

There may also be a mucus discharge around the eyes and nose, and the animal could be coughing, have diarrhea, vomiting, tremors, seizures or chewing fits.

Distemper spreads through contact with bodily fluids, and it cannot infect humans. It can spread to cats and dogs quite easily, even without direct contact with an infected raccoon.

You should get dogs vaccinated against distemper and rabies, and take care to prevent exposure of young unvaccinated dogs to wildlife.

If you see an animal that may have Distemper, report it to the Ministry of Natural Resources.

If you would like to have an animal removed from your property, please call a local trapper or hunter.