ROYAL OAK, Mich. (AP) – An exotic animal whose discovery in suburban Detroit led officials to lemurs, foxes and other animals being kept in a home’s garage has been euthanized, the Detroit Zoo announced Thursday.
The white-nosed coati was euthanized last week at the direction of the Macomb County Health Department to test for rabies, the zoo said, after a person living near where it was found roaming July 9 reported being bitten.
A necropsy showed no evidence of rabies, according to the zoo, which is located in Royal Oak. Physicians couldn’t rule out the potential for rabies exposure due to the nature of the man’s wounds. He has received vaccine treatment.
“Exotic animals require specialized veterinary care, which privately owned animals rarely receive,” Detroit Zoological Society’s chief veterinarian Ann Duncan said in a statement. “We are following strict quarantine protocols as these animals are examined and cared for.”
The white-nosed coati is a member of the raccoon family and is found in the southwest U.S., Mexico, Central and South America. The 29 other animals found in Warren included another white-nosed coati, two ring-tailed lemurs and three fennec foxes. In addition, the garage held a number of rabbits and birds.
The birds and small mammals have been transferred to the Michigan Humane Society, but the other animals remain in the care of Detroit Zoo staff. The animals will be under quarantine for at least 30 days. Permanent homes for the other coati as well as the lemurs and foxes haven’t been determined.
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