Other than that signature, repelling odor, typically skunks are no cause for alarm in East Texas. However, when skunks, or any typically non-aggressive creature is rabid, it's important for East Texans to keep an eye out and make sure you and your family keep a safe distance.

And if for any reason you've not had your pets vaccinated to protect them from rabies, make an appointment with your veterinarian as soon as possible.

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Recently, Smith County Animal Control sent out a warning about an East Texan who had to shoot two skunks near their property near County Road 434 near Hideaway a couple of weeks ago due to what appeared to be bizarre behavior.

They contacted Smith County Animal Control about the situation. The skunks were sent to the Texas Department of State Health Services who tested them. The results? Both of the animals tested positive for rabies.

And then another rabid skunk was discovered in the "3000 block of County Road 313 East last Thursday, April 29," according to the Smith County Facebook page.

Smith County Animal Control sent out letters encouraging area residents to make sure their pets were up to date on their vaccinations, too. They also stressed the importance of keeping an eye out for wildlife that appear to be acting in strange ways.

Things to watch for include stumbling, roaming around in the daytime if they're typically nocturnal creatures, aggressiveness, vocalizing, and even seizures.

If you've had an encounter or want to learn more please contact the Smith County Animal Shelter at 903-266-4303. After hours, you can contact the 24-hour center (if it's a non-emergency) at 903-566-6600.

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