MCT REGIONAL NEWS
A Pasco baby is being treated to prevent rabies after she was bitten twice by a rabid bat last weekend on her grandparents’ deck.
Derek and Melissa Anderson learned Tuesday afternoon that the bat had tested positive for rabies. But they had taken their 11-month-old daughter, Alanna, to the emergency room and had treatment started for the rabies virus immediately after she was bitten three days earlier.
“Everything’s fine. It’s 100 percent curable,” Derek said.
But that might not have been the case if Alanna’s grandmother had not seen the bat land on her, he said.
Derek and Melissa had dropped Alanna off with her grandparents Saturday evening while they went out to dinner.
The evening was unseasonably warm and Dan and Sandra Anderson had Alanna out on the deck of their west Pasco house.
As the umbrella was about a quarter of the way open she saw “something black flutter out toward Alanna,” Sandra said. “It was weird. I thought maybe it was moths.”
That’s when she saw a small bat clinging to Alanna’s back near her left shoulder.
Sandra flicked at it, but the bat didn’t move. She flicked it a second time and it flew off.
The bat only had been on Alanna for seconds, but when her grandmother looked closely she saw two tiny pinpricks where the bat had been sitting near her shoulder and another pair in the center of her back.
Alanna had not cried, at least until she saw how upset her grandmother was.
At the Kadlec Regional Medical Center emergency department in Richland, the baby was given two immunoglobulin shots and started on a series of an additional four vaccine shots to be spread over two weeks. At that point they did not know the bat was rabid.
Because her grandmother touched the bat, she also is getting the series of shots, and, as a precaution, her grandfather is too because the bat fluttered past him, Sandra said.