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Pet owners urged to update pet vaccination

June 3, 2010

Agriculture and Forestry Commissioner Mike Strain, D.V.M., urged all pet owners to make sure their rabies vaccinations are up to date.
“A case of rabies in a dog was confirmed in Lafayette on June 1,” Strain said. “Cats and dogs account for the majority of the reported rabies cases in companion animals in the United States, but the disease is easily prevented with vaccinations. Pet owners need to maintain their pets’ vaccination schedule.”
Strain said the infected dog was observed roaming around the Willow Brook Apartments off W. Willow Street in the Madeline Place subdivision. The dog was euthanized.
Strain said anyone who thinks they may have come into contact with the infected dog to call the Louisiana Office of Public Health 24-hour number at 1-800-256-2748. A photograph of the dog may be found at the LDAF Website at
“Rabies is almost always deadly to humans without proper treatment,” Strain said. “The Department of Health and Hospitals has done an excellent job notifying the public of the health hazard and my office will continue to work closely with DHH to protect the state’s human and animal health.”
Rabies symptoms in animals usually develop between 20 and 60 days after exposure. In the “furious” form of rabies, an animal may become extremely aggressive, vicious and ultra sensitive to touch and other stimulation. In the “dumb” form of the disease, the animal becomes lethargic, weak in one or more limbs and unable to raise its head or make sounds because its throat and neck muscles are paralyzed. In both forms of animal rabies, death follows a few days after the symptoms appear, usually from respiratory failure.