CRANFORD, NJ — Three Cranford residents were bitten by a stray cat that has tested positive for rabies, according to Cranford police. Between Oct. 4 and Oct. 5, the PD received reports from theree separate residents that they were bitten by a stray cat. All three victims came into contact with the cat in the area of Orchard Street, Tulip Street and Spring Garden Place.

On the evening of Oct. 5, one of those victims was able to contain the cat and called the police, who turned it over to Animal Control. This cat has since tested positive for rabies.

The cat is described as a multi-colored; gray, black and brown.

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According to the ASPCA website, rabies is most often transmitted through a bite from an infected animal. Less frequently, it can be passed on when the saliva of an infected animal enters another animal’s body through mucous membranes or an open, fresh wound. The risk for contracting rabies runs highest if your cat is exposed to wild animals.  In the United States, rabies is reported in cats more than in any domestic species.

Classic signs of rabies in cats are changes in behavior including aggression, increased vocalization, loss of appetite, weakness and disorientation. 

Any resident that has had contact with this cat is asked to contact the Westfield Regional Health Department at 908-789-4070 extension 4073.