Camilla Schumacher had been sitting outside her home in Lincoln County last Monday, minding her own business, when she suddenly realised she’d been bitten.
Thankfully, her dog Kane was around and sprung into action, biting the bat off Camilla’s ankle.
“I looked down and my ankle was bleeding, and there were two little pinholes,” she told KOCO ABC5.
Worried about the pet, Camilla’s daughter Monica – who had also been there at the time – quickly reached down to remove the bat from Kane’s mouth.
Monica said: “Kane just ran and grabbed it off of her ankle, and then I’m straddling her by her jowls.“
Monica then sent the bat off for testing, with results showing that the animal had rabies.
Kane’s vet said she would have died for her heroic act, had it not been for her up-to-date vaccination.
The vet also added that people often don’t take the threat of rabies seriously enough, and that others should make sure they’re well-informed, along with their families.
Camilla is now home and has to quarantine for 45 days, while her dog remains as loving as ever.
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“She was being protective,“ she said.
“She so sweet and so loyal.”
Camilla said she’s glad she sought treatment and hopes that by sharing her story she’ll be able to spread the word about the dangers of rabies.
She added that now she knows what to do when coming into contact with a rabid animal, and that this could ultimately mean the difference between life and death.
“I think, maybe, it’s a godly thing that this happened so a message could get out,” Camilla said.
Last year, figures from the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention revealed that bats are responsible for seven out of 10 rabies deaths in the United States.
The CDC said even a tiny scratch or bite can be enough to give someone rabies.
A scratch or bite from a bat can be smaller than the top of a pencil eraser, but that’s enough to give a person rabies, the CDC said.
Dr. Robert Glatter, an emergency physician at Lenox Hill Hospital in New York City, said: “Initial symptoms of rabies may include a fever with pain or tingling, a burning or prickly sensation at the wound.
“The virus spreads to the central nervous system, leading to subsequent inflammation of the brain and spinal cord.”