DOVER, NH (CBS) – Three Dover, New Hampshire residents are recovering after each was attacked by a rabid fox. It happened late last week in front of a day care.
The first encounter happened when a 14-year-old boy approached the front door to pick up his baby sister. The grey fox went on the attack, sinking his teeth into the boy’s leg. Minutes later, the animal bit the boy’s mother on her foot and wouldn’t let go.
Angela Peck was there with her two small children. She couldn’t believe what she was seeing. She says the fox “was as calm as can be until she saw movement or heard any kind of a noise. That’s when she was instantly in attack mode.”
“She was ready to attack at anything and everything,” Peck said.
Once all the adults and children were inside, the fox calmed down. It actually camped out on the front porch, curled up in the sun. Then, when animal control arrived, the animal’s temper flared again and it attacked one of the officers.
Dover Fire Department Assistant Chief James Ormond says the people at the day care were smart to stay inside until Fish and Game authorities arrived. He says the fox was acting like a family pet, so it was clear something was wrong.
“It’s obviously not a domesticated animal so it’s not supposed to come up and go towards the doors during daylight,” Ormond says. “That’s typically the key that something’s wrong. Most wild animals don’t want to intermingle with us.”
The animal was euthanized at the scene. Fish and Game officials also searched the woods nearby looking for a fox den, but they didn’t find one. So they think this particular fox got separated from the pack when it became rabid. They do not think there is an ongoing danger to this neighborhood.
But officials do want to warn people never to approach a wild animal that seems to be acting strange – particularly a nocturnal creature who is awake during the day.