Two Vaccinated Dogs Killed for Lack of Revax in NC

A woman in NC had 2 dogs who got into a fight with a fox.  The dogs survived, the fox didn’t.  ACOs showed up to check the rabies vaccination dates for the dogs since they assumed the fox was rabid (no remains left to actually test the fox I guess).  Turns out, the rabies vax weren’t current so they kindly offered to seize the dogs and toss them in quarantine for 6 months – at a price tag of $10,000 – or kill them both.  The owner couldn’t afford the generous quarantine offer so animal control killed her dogs.

I don’t know how far out of date the rabies vaccines were but I do honestly believe they last for the life of a dog.  I understand the state has an obligation to protect the public from rabies but it seems a shame there couldn’t have been a reasonable, third option offered in the case of these vaccinated dogs who may or may not have been exposed to rabies.

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12 Comments

  1. Putting everything else aside… $10,000 for 6 months of shelter care? I don’t know about anyone else, but I’m certainly not spending $833 a month just to feed and house a single dog, and I doubt the shelter is, either.

    Reply
  2. Mary

     /  June 8, 2010

    This is ridiculous. First, a titer could have been done on both dogs to check for protection from rabies. Second, dogs are not required to be quarantined for 6 months to make sure they are rabies free. I think most places use 10 days’ quarantine.

    Reply
  3. 2002: “Findings from this study document that vaccine alone following severe exposure was unable to provide protection from rabies. However, vaccine combined with mAb resulted in protection in all treated dogs, revealing the potential use of mAb in PEP against rabies in naive dogs.”
    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/12171160
    I would presume that the dogs used in this study had never been vaccinated for rabies prior to this study. If so, then this method in practice would be even more effective on dogs that had at least one prior rabies vaccination.

    Post exposure prophylaxis is possible in dogs just as it is in humans.

    Reply
  4. Fred

     /  June 8, 2010

    Inexcusable! Titers would have determined their rabies status and or a 14 day quarantine could have been done. (14 day is standard). It’s upsetting and becoming tiresome to see knee jerk reactions. The ACO’s facility or shelter should have better training and owners need to better educated themselves to prevent occurrences like this. The simple fact of the matter is it was easier to scare and bully the owner into relinquishing the dogs than appropriately managing the situation. This is happening all over the US and citizens need to put a stop to flagrant abuse.

    Reply
  5. Shocked

     /  June 8, 2010

    I find this story hard to believe. Most quarantines are 10 days and under this circumstance the dogs would be kept at home for observation. If this is a true story, then I hope the dog owner sues.

    Reply
  6. Pollie

     /  June 8, 2010

    I know of two dogs that killed a skunk in their yard, which tested positive for rabies. The dogs were home quarantined. One dog was recently vaccinated and the other needed to be revaxed. The dog which needed revaxed was and no issues with AC. The dogs were fine after quarantine

    This seems way over the top

    Reply
  7. Never

    Call

    Animal

    Control

    Reply
  8. Here Here, H. Houlahan!

    Reply
  9. 6 months quarantine? It is 10 days in Houston and animals do not have to be quarantined at the shelter. They can be quarantined at a vet’s office (or at home if rabies vax are current).

    This is another instance of a kill shelter going out of their way to slaughter animals when life saving alternatives exist. And in this case, I believe this shelter broke the law. I hope the owner contacts the city or county officials where she lives and complains. And I hope she can get some media attention. This is absolutely ridiculous.

    Reply
  10. Ten days for an animal who bites a human. I guess rabies is only actually able to be tranmitted at the very end of its disease cycle? If the animal is still alive in ten days, it is considered to have been unable to transmit rabies. But it can take up to six months for symptoms to show up if an unvaccinated animal is bitten by a rabid animal, depending on where on the body the bite occurred. So yes, six months is the appropriate recommendation.

    Goodness knows, all of this could have been avoided if people’d actually follow the law. Which was written to protect people, not animals. The law is far more likely to kill your unvaccinated dog than rabies.

    Reply
    • Yes to your second and third sentences, no to the rest. Rabies can’t be transmitted during the incubation period, which usually lasts 1-3 months, not six. A 10-14 day in-home quarantine is a standard precaution when there’s *no reason evidence of infection*.

      http://pathmicro.med.sc.edu/virol/rabies.htm

      Reply
      • PJBoosinger

         /  June 10, 2010

        Unfortunately, law often lags FAR behind science and dweeby bureaucrats even further behind.

        Besides that, all of this about quarantine is rather irrelevant in that the human bitten should begin treatment immediately and all that is needed for the animal is seclusion at home for whatever period is deemed appropriate. We no longer have a need to kill the dogs for immediate testing because the human treatment has been improved so much so…

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