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Tea puppy had rabies: persons exposed asked contact health officials.





 
SOUTH DAKOTA DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
Friday, August 12, 2011
CONTACT: Lon Kightlinger, (605) 773-3737          
 
Tea puppy had rabies:   persons exposed asked contact health officials. 
 
PIERRE, S.D. – A black puppy in Tea has tested positive for rabies and health officials are urging individuals who have been bitten, scratched or in contact with the puppy’s saliva to call the state Department of Health or their physician to determine whether rabies shots are needed. The department’s number is 1-800-592-1861.
The rabid puppy was one of two Springer-Labrador cross puppies at a residence on the corner of Byron and 3rd Street in southwest Tea. Many anonymous passersby played with the rabid puppy. The other seven litter-mates of the rabid puppy have been located and the adoptive owners are being advised. 
Rabies is contracted by exposure to a rabid animal, typically through a bite. Scratches and saliva contact with broken skin or mucus membranes are also possible routes of transmission. Prompt treatment following exposure can prevent rabies. Treatment includes administration of rabies immune globulin and a series of four doses of vaccine administered in the arm.
Individuals who may have been exposed to the puppies can contact the department at 1-800-592-1861 or their physician.
Through the end of July, South Dakota has reported 23 rabid animals (13 skunks, 2 cattle, 2 raccoons, 3 cats, 2 dogs, and 1 bat). Skunks are the primary reservoir of rabies in South Dakota and are the likely source of this puppy’s disease. Since 2001, 409 skunks and 40 dogs have tested positive for rabies in South Dakota. Pet owners are encouraged to make sure their animals’ rabies vaccinations are up to date.
More information about rabies can be found on the department’s web site at http://doh.sd.gov/DiseaseFacts/Rabies.aspx.
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