ABERDEEN NJ - MONMOUTH COUNTY HEALTH OFFICIALS SAY A PIT BULL LIVING IN A BACKYARD WITH 3 OTHER DOGS HAD RABIES - IT APPARENTLY BIT 3 PEOPLE AND WAS IN CLOSE CONTACT WITH 1 OTHER PERSON BEFORE IT DIED
A RABID PIT BULL in New Jersey bit at least three people and several fellow dogs before it died, and now authorities are asking anyone who thinks they may have come in contact with the animal to notify them immediately.
Monmouth County public health officials say the dog, Champ, was living with a family in Aberdeen and did not have its current rabies vaccination when it contracted the disease.
Three people were bitten by the Champ and a fourth was in close contact with it before its death, authorities said. All of them are now undergoing post-exposure treatment, according to the county health department.
One of those people is Kim Davis, who told NBC 4 New York that she is undergoing a course of rabies shots after being bitten on the finger by Champ, her daughter's dog.
"He nipped my finger," she said. " he didn't really bite it; he nipped it."
Davis said that Champ lived in the back yard with three other dogs -- including her's. All three surviving animals are being kept in isolation for observation.
Christopher Merkel, the Monmouth County public health coordinator, said that they're asking anyone in Aberdeen that thinks they may have come in contact with the dog to get in touch with the health department immediately.
Even if they were near the dog but not bitten, residents should contact authorities he said."Unfortunately we can't say with 100 percent certainty where this dog was for every minute of the day," he said.
A New Jersey dog has not been infected with rabies since 2008, authorities said. This is only the eighth dog to be infected in the state since 1989.