GALAX, Va. (WFXR) — On Thursday morning, the Mount Rogers Health District released a warning about a rabid groundhog that was discovered in Galax earlier this week.

According to the health district, a groundhog with rabies symptoms was reported “staggering down Laurel Street” in Galax on Tuesday, Aug. 31. That groundhog has since tested positive for rabies.

The residents in this area encouraged to be alert and vigilant, making sure not to come in contact with wild mammals or unknown domestic animals.

If you or any mammal pets may have had recent contact with a groundhog in the area around Laurel Street, you are asked to contact the Galax City Health Department at 276-236-6127 or the Galax Police Department at 276-236-8101.

You should also make sure your pets’ rabies vaccinations are up to date. This can apply to livestock, as well.

“Remember, rabies is fatal once the symptoms appear,” stated a flyer shared by the Mount Rogers Health District on Thursday, Sept. 2. “All mammals (including humans) can get rabies. Rabies is most commonly transmitted by a bite, but also may be transmitted by saliva or brain tissue of a rabid animal coming into contact with eyes, mucous membranes, or open wounds.”

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