East Lyme fox attacks two people

East Lyme — A fox in the area of Heritage Road attacked two people on Monday and was not captured.

Ledge Light Health District, which announced the attack in a news release Monday afternoon, urged caution and said anyone observing a fox in the area should contact East Lyme/Waterford Animal Control at (860) 442-9451 or aco@waterfordct.org.

Director of Health Stephen Mansfield said two people were attacked but he could not provide details on the incident due to privacy laws.

In a news release, East Lyme police said dispatchers received a 911 call at about 10:20 a.m. Monday that an animal believed to be a fox attacked two people outside a home on Heritage Road. East Lyme police and Flanders Fire Department ambulance responded, along with animal control.

Animal Control Officer Robert Yuchniuk said the two individuals suffered bites, one to the leg and the other in the arm. The animal was driven off after the attack and could not be located despite a search in the area, Yuchniuk said.

East Lyme Police Chief Mike Finkelstein said one person was transported to L+M Hospital for evaluation and treatment. He said there were "no serious injuries but any exposure to a wild animal is cause for concern."

Yuchniuk, who continues to investigate, said the "behavior was extremely unusual for a healthy animal. We're assuming it was sick."

He added that it's "important for people to make sure their pets are vaccinated and that they report any aggression in animals, or animals who appear to be drunk."

Ledge Light noted the public should refrain from feeding or approaching any wild or stray animals. Officials also noted rabies, a deadly disease caused by a virus that can infect all warm-blooded animals, is spread mostly by wild animals but also stray dogs and cats. The disease can be spread by scratches from infected animals or when infected saliva comes into contact with open wounds or mucous membranes.

Anyone with questions or concerns can contact the health district at (860) 448-4882.

Editor's Note: This article has been updated to clarify the number of people transported to the hospital.

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