Residents in Prospect Park, Brooklyn, are on high alert for an tiny rodent terrorizing the neighborhood.
New York City Health Department warns locals that there is a potentially rabid squirrel on the loose that has attacked and bitten at least five people on separate occasions. Although squirrels rarely have rabies, officials urge those who have been bitten to seek medical treatment.
According to the New York Daily News, all the squirrel attacks occurred near the Parkside and Ocean Ave. entrance to the park. Four of the five bite victims have been identified, and authorities want the fifth person, bitten while jogging, to come forward to help catch this crazed creature.
One of the bite victims is 7-year-old Maria Guerrero. According to WABC7, Guerrero’s family said the squirrel leaped into the air and sank its teeth into the child’s arm, completely unprovoked. When Guerrero’s dad tried to pry the animal from his daughter’s arm, it relentlessly came back for more, attacking two more times before climbing up a nearby tree. WABC7 correspondent N. J. Burkett tweeted photos of Guerrero’s bitten and bandaged arm following the attack.
The young girl said that the creature looked like a “flying squirrel” because of the way it leaped onto her arm. She needed stitches and is being treated preventably for rabies.
Another victim, Leku Percival, shot a video feeding the squirrel when it bit him on the fingertip. He said he’s convinced that this is the same crazed squirrel that is terrorizing the neighborhood. Although he has not seen a doctor, after hearing warnings from health officials, he plans to get checked out within the next 24 hours.
City officials have begun posting flyers around the neighborhood urging residents to report any other squirrel attacks, and to seek medical attention immediately if bitten.
Brooklynites are taking caution from the animal, while, of course, making some jokes in the meantime.
The squirrel has not yet been caught, but health officials say that if the creature actually does have rabies, it’s probably dead by now.
If you see something, say something, and get this squirrel in cuffs.
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