The Peoria City/County Health Department is urging residents to take extra precautions after a rabid bat was found in Chillicothe last month.
Rabies is a viral disease that can seriously damage the central nervous system if not treated.
Bites from infected racoons, skunks or bats can spread the disease, but dogs and cats can also be carriers. Administrator Monica Hendrickson urges anyone exposed to a bat or bitten by any wild animal to immediately call the health department and the Peoria County Animal Protection Services at 309-672-2440.
The health department has also issued household guidelines to help limit rabies exposure from bats or wild animals. These include always closing outside doors, capping chimneys and caulking or boarding any openings larger than one-quarter-inch.
Residents should also make sure pets receive routine rabies vaccinations.