Officials said the ninth positive rabies case of the year has been confirmed in Polk County.

On Monday, animal control officers impounded a bat that was found at a home on Cleveland Heights Boulevard in Lakeland.  The homeowner said her dog brought the bat inside the house and dropped it on the floor.

The bat was sent for testing and was confirmed positive for rabies on Wednesday.

Eight cases had previously been confirmed in Polk County:

  • Jan. 12 - Dog attacked and killed a raccoon at Elam Road in Lakeland
  • March 9 - Owners found their dog barking at bat in their yard on Lake Tennessee Drive in Auburndale
  • March 17 - Three stray dogs attacked and killed a raccoon at Flood Court in Bartow
  • April 29 - Dogs found with dead raccoon on Broken Arrow Trail in Lakeland
  • May 2 - A man found a bat in the driveway of his home on Pine Street in Mulberry
  • May 11 - Two dogs found with a dead raccoon on Sand Mountain Road in Fort Meade
  • Aug. 28 - A bat was found inside Tenoroc High School on Saddle Creek Road in Auburndale
  • Nov. 28 - A bat was found at Summerlin Academy on Jackson Avenue in Bartow

Officials said residents should be aware that bats and raccoons are considered to be at high risk for carrying rabies.  They ask residents to avoid approaching any animal that is acting in an unusual or suspicious manner.

If you think you or your pet has been exposed to rabies, please contact the PCSO Animal Control Section at 863-499-2600.