New Hampshire health officials are seeking the public’s help to locate a Massachusetts man who came into contact with a rabid baby raccoon last month in Conway.
Around 5 p.m. on Sept. 20, the man stopped on Route 16 to help a woman move two baby raccoons from the middle of the roadway, according to a statement from the New Hampshire Department of Health and Human Services.
The raccoons were found in a stretch of the highway between North Bald Hill and Thorn Hill roads. They were later brought to a wildlife rehabilitation center, where one died. That raccoon was found to have rabies , the statement said.
“We would like this individual to contact us so that we can assess his risk for acquiring rabies while handling the baby raccoon and to help determine whether he might need treatment to prevent rabies,” New Hampshire State Epidemiologist Dr. Benjamin Chan said in the statement.
Rabies is a contagious virus that is spread through saliva from an animal. It is often fatal, but can be prevented with a vaccine after exposure, Chan said.
The man was described as being of medium build, roughly 5’8” or 5’9”, with “very short or shaved, light-colored hair.” His arms were tattooed, and during the encounter with the raccoons, he was wearing a dark shirt and jeans, the statement said.
The man was driving a large pick-up truck with Massachusetts license plates and “over-sized” tires. The truck is either black, dark blue, or dark gray. Officials encourage the man to contact the Bureau of Infectious Disease Control at (603) 271-4496.