Raccoons in Hays showing distemper symptoms

HAYS, Kansas (AP) – Authorities are reporting an uptick in sick raccoons in Hays.

Police say the raccoons are exhibiting symptoms commonly associated with distemper. Humans can’t contract the neurological disease, but it’s contagious to other animals.

Sickened animals ultimately might be seen walking aimlessly or in circles. They also can become aggressive without provocation.

Authorities urge people to stay away from raccoons and keep family pets away from them. Pet owners also are urged to make sure their animals are current on all vaccinations.

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