A fox attacked three people and two dogs in Topsham on Saturday before being shot to death.

It follows a spate of fox attacks in Topsham over the past month, including four over the span of two weeks.

The fox was first seen hiding under a porch at a residence off Winter Street around 10:17 a.m, The Times Record reported.

It then attacked a dog and a 69-year-old man on Western Avenue about 45 minutes after it was first sighted. A Maine game warden was called to the scene.

Then at about 11:18 a.m, the fox attacked a dog and a 57-year-old woman on Bauer Lane. The fox did not break her skin during the attack, but the woman went to the hospital to get evaluated for rabies.

The fox continued to wander the neighborhood, eventually chasing a man into his Middle Street home, where he got a gun and fatally shot the animal.

The gray fox had porcupine quills embedded in its face, a likely sign that it may have been rabid, Topsham police Sgt. Mark Gilliam told The Times Record.

The fox was taken to the Maine Center for Disease Control and Prevention in Augusta to determine if it had rabies. The disease causes animals to become aggressive, and they can pose a threat in residential areas.

According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, rabies can be passed from animals to humans through body fluids, including saliva and spinal fluid, that come in contact with open skin.

The rabies vaccine is highly effective in humans, and the virus can be fatal if it goes untreated.

Out of the four attacks in Topsham in early April, only one of the animals tested positive for rabies. The other animals were not found or not tested because no one was injured during the attack.

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Leela Stockley

Leela Stockley is an alumna of the University of Maine. She was raised in northern Maine, and loves her cat Wesley, her puppy Percy and staying active in the Maine outdoors.