Fox kits found near the U.S. Capitol were euthanized after the mother fox bit at least nine people — including a member of Congress — and tested positive for rabies, authorities said Thursday.
Three fox kits that were found in a den were euthanized, DC Health said in a statement.
“Since the mother tested positive for the rabies virus and the kits could have been exposed during grooming or other means, they were no longer able to be safely rehabilitated and were humanely euthanized,” a statement from the department said.
DC Health said a day earlier that the mother fox was euthanized.
A fox bit Rep. Ami Bera (D-Calif.), a Politico reporter and at least seven other people, according to the health department and the victims' own accounts.
"[I] felt something lunge at the back of my leg. Thought it was going to be a small dog or something. Kind of jumped and then it's like, that's not a dog. It's a fox," Bera told NBC News. "You know, somebody started saying, 'Hey, there's a fox attacking that guy.'"
"The fox pierced Rep. Bera’s suit, but it was inconclusive whether or not the fox pierced his skin," a spokesperson for his office said.
"I was walking and the fox ran up behind me and clipped my ankle with its mouth," Politico reporter Ximena Bustillo said. "I screamed."
Anyone who came into physical contact with a fox or its kits, particularly near Capitol Hill, is asked to contact DC Health at 202-442-9143.
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