Here are some facts about rabies. Video of Jordan Window / lohud

Three people in Yorktown were bitten by a fox who raised rabies problems, the Westchester Health Department County confirms Tuesday. But local police believe the story could be more complex.

"I'm not sure I can describe the fox as' rabid," Yorktown Police Lt. Thomas J. Gentner.

Gentner said that he "still tries to gather more accurate information", but the question is whether officials are dealing with a rabid animal or whether it has somehow been provoked

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Though the Ministry of Health described the Fox in a Monday publication Gentner has his doubts as "aggressive."

"A person confronted with the fox initiated contact in at least one of the cases," Gentner said.

There is evidence that the fox has cared for and protected his equipment. A family of foxes was seen in the area, Gentner said, which might explain seemingly aggressive behavior.

"Wild animals will protect their young when they feel threatened," he said. "In my opinion, more information is needed before hysteria develops and the fox is described as rabid."

Rabies has not been confirmed – a brain tissue sample is needed to make that determination and, according to Caren Halbfinger of the Ministry of Health, no sample has been obtained yet.

"The fox was not caught, so we can not confirm only suspects," she said.

Like all mammals, foxes are susceptible to rabies. The animal in question was described as a gray fox, and the advocate of Frank Vincenti of the Wild Dog Foundation said that they get the disease more often than their larger, red cousins.

In New York State, 48 foxes have been tested for rabies so far in 2018. Of these, 17 cases were confirmed.

In the Lower Hudson Valley, only Rockland County 2018 has had a confirmed case of rabies in a fox to date.

Although the Yorktown animal has not been found, Vincenti said "it is clearly rabies," based on the observed behavior.

"A gray fox is usually very cryptic and shy," he said. They are small animals, about the size of the cat. "

A jogger on Lee Boulevard in Yorktown was the first to report a fox attack on Saturday around 6:00 am, he said the health department with. Two hours later, a man was bitten in his back yard on North Deerfield Road, and a second backyard on Sunday afternoon.

All three were treated for the disease as a preventive measure.

"Unusual behavior may be the first sign of rabies in an animal," the Ministry of Health said in a release, "A rabid animal can either become abnormally aggressive or unusually tame, it can lose people's fear and become agitated and irritable , or vice versa, appear particularly passive and discouraged. "lethargic. Sometimes stuttering and foaming are noticed on the mouth. "

Vincenti said that if the fox has not been caught so far, he will probably never be found if the animal actually has rabies." The disease, he said, is "horrible."

"When the beast is on Rabies was suffering, it is now surely dead "

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