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Rabid groundhog found at The Maryland Zoo

State health officials have confirmed that a wild groundhog that followed a visitor at The Maryland Zoo on July 8 had rabies.

The groundhog, which was not part of the zoo's animal collection, was captured by staff in the Maryland Wilderness section and tested for rabies, the Maryland Department of Health said Thursday. The groundhog was subsequently euthanized.

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Rabies is transmitted through the saliva of an animal. There have been 112 animals diagnosed with rabies in Maryland so far this year, including raccoons, bats, foxes, and four other groundhogs. Rabies is seen mostly in wildlife.

Any person who touched, or was touched by, a groundhog at The Maryland Zoo between June 24 and July 8 should contact the health department.

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