By Jennifer McGraw

YUBA CITY (CBS13) – Two young girls found a rabid bat in their play structure, alive, in a Yuba City neighborhood.

“You wouldn’t expect it on a teeny little patio,” said Laura Winebarger, mother of two.

It’s an unusual place to find a bat and in broad daylight.

“She knew that there was something not OK in her water table, and she came and got me,” Winebarger said.

The bat was splashing around in 3-year-old Hannah’s water table in a suburban Yuba City neighborhood.

“It was just a little bat,” Hannah held out her hands a few inches wide.

children Yuba City Children Find Rabid Bat In Play Structure

The bat, however, was drowning and Winebarger knew something was wrong.

“I instantly called animal control and an officer came out and picked up the bat and it was still alive,” she said.

Diana Barrett with Sutter Animal Services Authority said rabies is commonly round in bats.

“I think a lot of people are in the misbelief that rabies is not a concern. There is still a concern about rabies especially in wildlife,” she said.

Barrett knew this mom made the right decision.

“You should not pick it up yourself. Obviously do not use your hands or any kind of tools either,” she said.

As it turns out, the bat tested positive for rabies.

“Then called us and said you need to go get treatment started,” Winebarger said.

The bat never bit the girls, but rabies can be transferred through saliva. There’s no telling how long the bat was in the water.

“Thank goodness the kids just didn’t grab the bat and start playing with it,” she said.

According to Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, rabies is a preventable disease, but if not treated quickly, it could be deadly.

“If we hadn’t found the bat and then the girls developed rabies and they got sick, would we have known what it was?” Winebarger said.

She hopes other parents know what to do when ever coming in contact with a bat.

According to animal services, it’s the second rabid bat reported in the same area.


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