MESA COUNTY, Colo. (KKCO/KJCT) -- They may look cute, but wild animals should be left wild.
That's the warning from health officials.
Health officials In Weld County say 21 people recently needed to be treated for rabies after a woman decided to care for a baby raccoon.
Rabies infection is most commonly spread through the bite of an animal infected with rabies virus and is almost always fatal in humans if it's not treated early.
A person in Larimer County has been infected with tularemia, also known as rabbit fever, which is transmitted by droppings of sick animals.
Health officials in Mesa County say there are no concerns of either disease locally right now, and you can keep it that way if you keep wildlife in the wild.
"If you find any sort of animal acting erratically, make sure to avoid any contact with them as they could be suffering from a disease," said Andy Tyler, a regional epidemiologist for Mesa County Public Health.
For more prevention tips, click here.