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Posted at 10:30 AM ET, 07/ 2/2010

Rabid fox bites visitor to Bowie Six Flags

By Washington Post editors

A rabid fox bit a visitor at Six Flags American in Bowie last weekend and officials are searching for anyone who have come in contact with the animal.

Prince George's County Health Department said the fox bit a Six Flags visitor on June 26. The fox was captured on Tuesday and sent for rabies testing. The fox tested positive.

“Because rabies is a highly transmittable and treatable disease, the Health Department is taking all measures to locate any individuals that may have come in contact with this infected fox or any other infected animal,” Donald Shell, the county's health officer, said in a news release.

Officials said the health department also needs to know of any animals that may have come in contact with the fox.

The first sign of rabies in animals include a change in behaviors, such as appearing unusually tame or extremely aggressive, staggering, convulsions, frothing at the mouth, gradual paralysis or change in voice. Officials say that if a pet has a wound of unknown origin a veterinarian should be contacted immediately.

Officials said any person or animal who may have come in contact with the fox should contact the county's health department at 301-583-3750. After normal work hours, the weekend or holidays, call 240-508-5774.

By Washington Post editors  | July 2, 2010; 10:30 AM ET
Categories:  Maryland  
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Rabid fox bites visitor to Bowie Six Flags?

Who proreads this stuff?

Posted by: Gtown10 | July 2, 2010 11:13 AM | Report abuse

Huh? I understood the headline.

Posted by: pundito | July 2, 2010 11:54 AM | Report abuse

Bowie Six Flags isn't the name of the park. Also, the headline suggests that there is more than one Six Flags, versus, for example, a New Carrollton Six Flags or an Arlington Six Flags.

Posted by: linroy62 | July 2, 2010 11:59 AM | Report abuse

I have a relative that lives closer to DC (Cheverly) than this six flags and they have seen a fox in their community. I took a tour of the Anacostia river and the guide said they have seen foxes, a coyote, dog packs and more along the river. nature will be nature. Being that i see deer darn near anywhere I am not surprised that the foxes are following.

Posted by: oknow1 | July 2, 2010 12:08 PM | Report abuse

Always nice when the grammar police show up. Buncha show-offs, if you ask me.

Posted by: lingering_lead | July 2, 2010 12:28 PM | Report abuse

The most important change in behavior is that small animals who should run away instead appear "friendly". In fact, they're just disoriented and/or aggressive. But small children marvel that a squirrel who usually runs off is suddenly friendly, and then they're bitten.

I never wondered about a worst case scenario for a rapid animal, but an amusement park would be it. Impossible to seal off and entirely dependent upon the willing dollars and participation of young people. At school, they just keep the kids inside until the parents complain enough. No one ever has to go to an amusement park.

Posted by: blasmaic | July 2, 2010 1:00 PM | Report abuse

More Dan Snyder bad karma carryover...his negative stench remains even though he's gone.

Posted by: kahlua87 | July 2, 2010 1:03 PM | Report abuse

The headline also suggests that Six Flags is located in Bowie, when it is not. I wished someone from your esteemed paper actually lived in Prince George's so you all could understand that everything East of the Beltway is not BOWIE. Six Flags is in Mitchelville/Largo - not Bowie. Moreover, the young folks who were shot at the graduation party a few weeks back reside close to Bowie, but not in it. Your colleagues at the Gazette have figured this out, why can't you all?

Posted by: RGMSMom | July 2, 2010 1:19 PM | Report abuse

First of all, I live 5 minutes from the 6 flags and its in Upper Marlboro, not Bowie. Secondly, the whole area used to be farm land & there are all kinds of animals everywhere. Third, if you spend $38, or how much the ridiculous fee is to get into that crap-hole for one day, you deserve to get rabies! I mean who lets a wild animal get that close to them? Haven't these people ever seen "When animals attack"??????

Posted by: fisalaye82 | July 2, 2010 1:47 PM | Report abuse

To all, It's not Bowie, Mitcheville,or Upper Marlboro, go wayyyyyy back in the books and guess what..... it's "LARGO", It has been, it is and IT'S ALWAYS GOING TO BE LARGOOOOOOOOOO. SO TO ALL YOU SO CALLED SNOOTY PEOPLE.....GET OVER IT AND CALL IT WHAT IT IS "LARGO", "LARGO",

Posted by: pink1 | July 2, 2010 2:28 PM | Report abuse

But Largo has such negative connotations..doesn't it? People who live in North Bethesda couldn't possibly live in lowly Rockville. Who cares? That place is a craphole anyway, wherever it is.

Posted by: whataboutfreedom | July 2, 2010 3:04 PM | Report abuse

i love that people "correct" the article and/or title and then have mistakes in their own facts or grammar (e.g. there is only one six flags, or "proread")

Posted by: nihil1318 | July 2, 2010 3:35 PM | Report abuse

to blasmaic: You don't need to worry about a squirrel giving you rabies. Squirrels do tame very quickly in urban areas and will eat out of your hand and come up to people, but they are not rabies carriers. Sure, any mamal CAN get rabies but a squirrel, for several reasons is not a threat, number one being, no salivary glands which is how the virus would be transmitted. Rodents and rabits are not a threat. Your concern should be racoons, fox, skunks, and feral cats.

Posted by: KimberlyMcCabe | July 2, 2010 3:39 PM | Report abuse

Well, I understand the headline problem, but what about "Officials said any person or animal who may have come in contact with the fox should contact the county's health department..."?

Posted by: skidge | July 2, 2010 5:03 PM | Report abuse

The last time I visited Six Flags the most noticeable aspect of that third-rate rate park were vast thickets of poison oak and ivy ... everywhere. Maybe that's called Snyder landscaping.

I'd bulldoze the place. Hell, why not Prince Georges County in its entirety? The criminals there outnumber the cops by five-to-one. And half the cops are criminals themselves.

Posted by: perryneheum | July 2, 2010 8:52 PM | Report abuse

fisalaye82 - Tell my four year old son who was attacked in both legs FROM BEHIND on a public walkway in a crowd of people he deserves to get shot after shot of vaccinations for walking down the path with his parents in what is supposed to be an amusement park. He was really amused at Children's Hospital getting injections in all those wounds. Tell my wife who was less than a foot away when this rabid diseased animal jumped out from under the rail and less than two seconds later was biting my son. Then tell me who is also getting the shots as well because I had to peel it off my son bare handed that I deserve to get the disease. REALLY?! Then tell the rest of the crowd of people who were yelling and trying to scare this diseased animal away that they probably deserve it too. The biggest difference is I was there up close in an unprovoked attack that took less than ten total seconds and you are just sitting behind your computer screen blowing hot air at something you KNOW NOTHING ABOUT!

Posted by: jtwilburt | July 2, 2010 11:33 PM | Report abuse

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