Rabid cat attacks in Newark

January 29, 2009 4:00:45 PM PST
It's not unusual to see a stray cat or two roaming about a neighborhood, but in Newark, the situation may just be getting out of hand. That became apparent when one feline, infected with rabies, went on the attack.

Newark residents are questioning whether the stray cats they see around are infected with rabies.

Kathy Carpenter was attacked by a rabid cat in the driveway of her Chestnut Hill estates home on January 15th.

"It was just sitting there and it was spitting and making these funny noises and when I said 'who are you?,' it cried out like a loud meow and it darted out and just latched onto my leg," Kathy said.

That's when Kathy's husband, Paul, grabbed a broom.

"It was wild. It was crazy. It was hissing, It was a crazy cat," Paul said.

Kathy Carpenter still has battle wounds and she's still undergoing a painful series of rabies shots once SPCA agent Kyle Webb informed her the cat was rabid. He should know as he captured the ferocious feline, but only after he too was exposed.

"As it was fighting me, I just got exposed to bodily fluids in my face and eyes," Webb said.

There's no way of knowing if there is another rabid animal running loose in their neighborhood, that's why the SPCA is putting residents on alert.

Kelly Hillary a mother in Chestnut Hill Estates is also a veterinary technician who has the same message as the SPCA agents: get animals spayed, neutered, and vaccinated, especially neighbors who feed feral cats

Kathy Carpenter hopes her neighbors listen.

"I don't want this to happen to anybody else, especially not to a child," Kathy said.

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