Discuss as:

Beaver attacks two girls swimming in Virginia lake

Two sisters are recovering after being bitten by a rabid beaver while swimming in Lake Anna near Louisa, Va.

Annabella and Alyssa Radnovich, ages 11 and 8, were attacked Sunday near Sorbie Cove in Louisa, Louisa County Sheriff's Maj. Donald Lowe said.

Alyssa felt a bump on her leg and initially thought it was her cousin playing with her, the girls’ mother, Wendy Radnovich, told fredericksburg.com.


“She could see this dark shadow underneath her, so she thought it was a person,” the mother said.

The beaver bit Alyssa as she tried to leave the water, then circled Annabella and bit her in the back of the leg.

Alyssa received around 15 stitches on her upper thigh and Annabella sustained three wounds just above her knee, Wendy Radnovich told fredercksburg.com

The Spotsylvania County girls have since been released from the hospital.

The girls’ uncle shot the beaver with a BB gun, then killed it with a knife, the mother told fredericksburg.com.

Watch the most-viewed videos on NBCNews.com

Police then turned the beaver over to the health department, which confirmed the animal had rabies.

Virginia Department of Health officials said it's just the fourth time in the past decade that a beaver in Virginia has been confirmed to have rabies.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

More content from NBCNews.com:

Follow US News from NBCNews.com on Twitter and Facebook