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Of the 450 animals in 2011 that animal control had reason to pick up in Fairfax County and test for rabies, 40 tested positive for the disease.

Fairfax is not the only area this summer to have rabid beaver problems.

In July two young girls were bitten by one of the critters while swimming in Lake Anna in Spotsylvania. At the time, Virginia Department of Health officials said it was the fourth time in the last decade a beaver in the state was confirmed to have rabies.

Last month, a 51-year-old Boy Scout leader from New York was attacked by a rabid beaver while swimming in the Delaware River.

While animal control officers continue to canvass neighborhoods in Fairfax to educate residents on being mindful of their surrounding in the wilderness, Ms. Peterson is working to adjust to a new normal.

Standing in her front doorway, shaded by trees, she said she’d taken down the sign discouraging interview requests at her Falls Church home.

Her message for those curious about her life since the attack: “Thank you and goodbye.”