Three live bats were found in northern Fontana within the past five days, and all of them tested positive for rabies, according to a Facebook post by the Fontana Police Department on July 28.
The first bat was found on the ground in the 15000 block of Summit Avenue. The second bat was discovered in the 5400 block of Stagecoach Drive, and the third one was located in the 14000 block of Herschel Avenue.
The bats were immediately sent to the San Bernardino County Public Health Department for testing.
Health officials are estimating that only one half of one percent of the bat population is infected with the virus. Rabies virus is transmitted through direct contact (such as through broken skin or mucous membranes in the eyes, nose, or mouth) with saliva or brain/nervous system tissue from an infected animal.
Rabies is a rare, fatal viral infection of the brain that can infect animals and humans. Because rabies is a viral disease, it is almost always fatal once symptoms appear, police said.
"Proper vaccination is the best and only way to keep you and your dog safe," police said. "If you see a bat on the ground, do not touch it, nor pick it up. You may call the Fontana Animal Service Team at (909) 350-7700."