Riverside Police Warn Pet Owners of ‘Zombie Raccoons’ - NBC Chicago

Riverside Police Warn Pet Owners of ‘Zombie Raccoons’

The raccoons carry the canine distemper virus, which can be dangerous to dogs

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    Riverside Police Warn Pet Owners of ‘Zombie Raccoons’
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    A stock photo shows a raccoon in a cage.

    Riverside police are warning dog owners in the west suburb to take precautions after receiving an uptick in calls regarding “zombie raccoons.”

    These raccoons carry the canine distemper virus, which can be dangerous to dogs, Riverside police said. The zombie description refers to the way the infected raccoons walk on their hind legs, stagger and bare their teeth.

    Symptoms include ocular and nasal discharge, sneezing, coughing, lethargy, loss of appetite, vomiting, diarrhea, tremors and seizures, police said. The virus can result in death from secondary pneumonia or seizures.

    Police are urging dog owners to vaccinate their pet and supervise them while outside so that they don’t come in contact with wild animals. If residents see a sick raccoon, they should call the police.

    Authorities Warn Against Zombie Raccoons in Suburban Stickney

    Authorities Warn Against Zombie Raccoons in Suburban Stickney

    If you visit southwest suburban Stickney, there is a good chance you will spot certain types of pesky animals--including raccoons. NBC 5's Christian Farr reports.

    (Published Monday, March 18, 2019)

    “It seems every year around this time we get a rise in calls about raccoons acting oddly and we respond to calls about raccoons that may be a danger to the public,” Riverside Police Chief Tom Weitzel said. “Our policy allows us to put down animals that are suffering or pose a threat to public safety.”

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