Residents in Ohio Call Police for Help with Invasion of Strange, Zombie-Like Raccoons

Residents of Youngstown, Ohio, have called for the intervention of the Police after creepy raccoons invaded the area.

Local police have received over a dozen calls from concerned residents who have spotted these nocturnal creatures out during the day acting strangely, WKBN reports.

Robert Coggeshal told the station about the raccoon he saw while playing outside with his dog. “He would stand up on his hind legs, which I’ve never seen a raccoon do before, and he would show his teeth and then he would fall over backward and go into almost a comatose condition.”

According to Coggeshal, the animal wasn’t scared and even ignored any attempts to chase it away adding, “He’d come out of it, walk around and then he’d do the same thing again. Get on his hind feet and show his teeth.”

The Ohio Department of Natural Resources suspects the alarming raccoons prompting calls to the authorities might be infected with distemper — not rabies, as some may assume. Distemper cannot be contracted by humans, but it is transmissible to canines, TIME reports.

According to VCA Animal Hospitals, distemper, also known as canine distemper, as a “highly contagious viral disease of domestic dogs and other animals such as ferrets, skunks and raccoons. It is often fatal, incurable, and multisystemic disease that affects the respiratory, gastrointestinal, and central nervous systems.

Symptoms of distemper include vomiting, diarrhea, thick yellow discharge from the eyes and nose, cough and, in severe cases, seizures and neurological signs.

Geoff Westerfield of the Ohio Department of Natural Resources told WKBN that distemper among raccoons usually dies out on its own, as those infected yield to the disease.

 

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