NewsLocal NewsCollier County


Bats discovered in Naples gym, prompts health alert

Posted at 6:43 AM, Jan 10, 2022
and last updated 2022-01-18 12:38:46-05

NAPLES, Fla. — The Florida Department of Health in Collier County issued a health alert Friday after bats were discovered at a local gym.

The animals were discovered at Naples Family Fitness on Vanderbilt Beach Road.

The department says anyone who may have handled a bat found at or near the facility around Jan. 3 should be screened immediately for possible rabies exposure.

Contact DOH-Collier at (239)252-8226 during regular business hours or (239)293-3010 after hours to schedule a screening.

No cases of rabies have been connected to the discovery of bats at the gym at this time. The gym's general manager, Sabrina Paxman, was told the bats are a protected species, which means animal experts have to be the ones in charge of removing and rehousing them.

According to the department, "an animal with rabies could infect other wild animals or domestic animals that have not been vaccinated against rabies. All domestic animals should be vaccinated against rabies, and contact with all wildlife should be avoided, particularly bats, raccoons, foxes, skunks, otters, bobcats and coyotes."