Animal Bites & Exposures

Tuberculosis (TB)

TB is caused by a bacterium called Mycobacterium tuberculosis. The bacteria usually attacks the lungs, but TB can attack any part of the body, including the kidneys, spine and brain. Not everyone with TB becomes sick. As a result, two TB-related conditions exist: latent TB infection (LTBI) and TB disease. If not treated properly, TB can be fatal.

TB is a pulmonary disease that can be spread through the air to people in close contact with someone who is ill with active TB. This results in an infection that is not contagious, unless it later develops into an active disease.

Learn More about TB


Community Health Services offers Rabies vaccines for a multiple dose series.

When a Rabies Vaccine is Necessary

Because rabies is such a deadly disease, it is important to consider even a small risk of exposure as a serious reason to seek medical care and vaccination. Once symptoms show, the potential for a fatal outcome is more likely.

While the bite of an animal is the most common way rabies is transmitted to humans, you may not always know if you’ve been bitten or otherwise exposed to the saliva from animals infected with the disease. An infected animal that does not show symptoms of the rabies virus may expose you to the disease by licking a cut on your skin or around your mouth and eyes.

While bats are typical carriers, they are a non-aggressive species, as pollinators encountering one in your living environment is alarming and unsettling.

It is not recommended that residents attempt to catch, release, or kill bats or any wildlife. Residents should contact Animal Care & Control, their local police department, or private removal services.

In certain situations or “exposures” it may be beneficial to have the bat tested for rabies. Use caution when dealing with bats.

Animal Care & Control staff are available to help navigate you through the process and give direction.

Call Pitkin County Animal Care & Control or Snowmass Village Animal Control

Potential Signs and Symptoms of Rabies

Early warning signs of rabies in humans can appear to be flu-like, such as fever, chills, nausea or vomiting. This may last for several days. As the disease progresses, more serious symptoms develop. These include:

  • An irritable, anxious mood.
  • Confusion and hallucinations.
  • Difficulty sleeping and hyperactivity.
  • Drooling, difficulty with swallowing and a fear of water because of it.
  • Paralysis in parts of the body.

Steps to Take if You Have Been Bitten


Don’t panic, but don’t ignore the bite.


Wash the wound thoroughly and vigorously with soap and lots of water.


If possible, capture the animal under a large box or at least try to identify it before it runs away. Don’t try to pick the animal up!


Depending on the severity of the bite, immediately contact your primary care physician or Aspen Valley Hospital Emergency Room and get your first Rabies dose.


Contact the local public Health agency or animal control and they will come get the animal if you have been able to capture the biter.

  • Report any bite to Animal Care and Control as soon as possible after obtaining necessary medical attention.
  • Have Aspen Valley Hospital refer your additional doses at Community Health Aspen

How much does a rabies vaccination cost?

If you haven’t been vaccinated for rabies in the past and you become exposed, you’ll
need four injections over a period of 14 days. If you’ve been vaccinated for rabies in the past, you’ll only need two booster injections after exposure.

The national average out-of-pocket cost for one rabies vaccine runs between $1200 and $6500 total depending on the type of vaccine, where you purchase it, and the number of doses.

For further reading

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