It’s not a case of a fox in the henhouse, but rather a rabid fox in a woman’s backyard that is making headlines.
Tammy DuBois of Pittsgrove, New Jersey, is recovering from an attack by a fox that she strangled to death using one hand, as her other hand was busy trying to keep the animal’s mouth clamped shut.
“It was going crazy, making noises and its mouth was moving,” DuBois, 52, told NJ.com.
The animal had emerged from the bushes July 18 and began piercing its teeth into the woman’s right calf.
DuBois tried to escape by running up her porch steps to her house, but as she tried to open the door, the fox started gnawing sideways on the same wounded leg.
NJ.com notes, “With the animal tearing at her flesh she reached down and grabbed its snout with her left hand holding it tightly shut. With her right hand she grabbed the fox’s neck and squeezed.”
“It was biting at my leg, I had to do something,” DuBois said, explaining the animal tried to escape her grasp, but eventually fell limp.
“I couldn’t do anything else to get it away from me,” she said. “I don’t like to kill anything.”
DuBois treated her badly bleeding leg as best she could before calling her husband, who took her to a local hospital, where she was put on a two-week rabies treatment.
The dead fox was taken by animal-control officers, and state tests confirmed Monday the creature had rabies.
Officials said DuBois is the only human so far this year to be attacked by a rabid animal.
Experts say some indicators that an animal might be rabid include disorientation, foaming at the mouth and lethargy.
DuBois’ daughter, Laura, was inspired by her mother’s bravery during the assault.
“I’m just so proud of my mom for reacting the way she did,” Laura DuBois said. “I don’t know what I would have done.”
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