COLUMBIA, Mo. -- A pet monkey is being sought after two children were bitten by the animal at a popular city park.
Seven-year-old Liam Ritten was feeding popcorn to the monkey during a dog show at Stephens Lake Park on Saturday when the animal bit the boy's finger hard enough to require a trip to the emergency room, the boy's mother said.
The local health department reported Thursday that the monkey also bit an 11-year-old girl the same day, piercing the child's skin.
The monkey is believed to be a rhesus macaque. In rare situations, the species can transmit a virus known as Simian B, which is often fatal to humans and must be treated with an antiviral drug within 24 hours.
Health department officials released a photo Thursday of a woman seen with the monkey in hopes of identifying its owner. The animal was attached to a leash and wearing a diaper, the photo shows.