Judi Haft
Judi Haft campaign leader

<p></p><p></p><p>The current law stating a 10-day confinement for animals that
have bitten is antiquated. &nbsp;It was written during a time when rabies was
prominent (1950's &amp; 60's). &nbsp;</p>

<p>Per the CDC, wild animals accounted for 92% of cases of
rabies in 2010. &nbsp;29 cases of human rabies have been reported in
the US since&nbsp;2001. 8 of these 29 individuals were
infected outside the United States&nbsp;(7 abroad and 1 in Puerto
Rico). Only 2 human rabies cases that have occurred in&nbsp;the US
since 2001 have not been associated&nbsp;with exposure to bats. In a 2003
Virginia case, the virus variant was typed as a raccoon variant, and in a case reported during 2011, the source&nbsp;of the
rabies virus was not identified. There have been a total of 15 bat-associated
human rabies cases since 2001. In 11 of the 15 (73.3%)&nbsp;cases, there was a
report of a bite or direct contact with&nbsp;a bat. &nbsp;Of the 8% of reported
cases that were domestic animals, 62% were cats. Most&nbsp;(82.2%) of the 303
rabid cats were reported from states where raccoon rabies&nbsp;was enzootic,
with 2 states (PA&nbsp;&amp; NY) accounting for nearly 1/3 of rabid cats
reported during 2010. &nbsp;There were only 60 dogs in the entire United States
with rabies. &nbsp;47 of the 60 reports of that were reported, 32 were skunk, 14 were raccoon and 1 was Arctic fox rabies&nbsp;virus variants. &nbsp;</p><p>There were absolutely zero cases where a dog had been vaccinated for the
rabies virus, but then had the virus. &nbsp;This tells us that the vaccine
is, in fact, doing it's job. &nbsp;Therefore the 10-day confinement period is
not necessary for any animal that has proven to be vaccinated in accordance with
the state law.</p>

<p>In many cases, older dogs, when they are in poor health will
bite. &nbsp;They are in pain and are confused. Recently I've
spoken with 4 people that have had very similar issues with their older dogs.
&nbsp;In 2 of the 4 case, the owners had contacted their vets to do euthanasia
for them. They were saying goodbye to their dogs and just slightly
shifted their position and their dog bit them. &nbsp;According to state law,
these people now have to wait an additional 10 days before they can do what
they feel is right by their dog. &nbsp;In 2 other cases, the people were doing
something medically to attempt to relieve their dogs' pain when the dog bit.
&nbsp;Now that the dog bit, they have to wait 10 days before they can do what
they feel is right by their dog.</p>

<p>Police dogs are exempt from this law. The law states, "when
a person has been bitten by a police dog that is currently vaccinated against
rabies, the police dog may continue to perform its duties for the peace officer
or law enforcement agency...". This is discriminatory! &nbsp;If there is
an exception for a police dog that is currently vaccinated, there should be an
exception for ALL dogs that are currently vaccinated.</p>

<p>We want the state to exempt from the 10-day
confinement period dogs that have proven to have their rabies vaccination so
that owners (and dogs) don't have to go through a painful waiting period,
perhaps putting their dog through more pain and confusion as my Lhasapoo,
Chachi, was put through. &nbsp;He bit my husband because he was in pain.
&nbsp;He had his rabies vaccination from the time he was 4 months old and it
was current. &nbsp;He was never late for a rabies vaccination in his nearly 15
years of life. &nbsp;We decided it was time, but because of the bite, had to
make him wait 10 more days. &nbsp;He was very confused and in a lot of pain.
&nbsp;It was awful to have to go through this with him and help him as best we
could without getting bit again. &nbsp;If he had bit again, the 10-day period
would start all over.</p>

<p>This is truly an antiquated law. &nbsp;Please help us change it.</p><p></p>

<p></p>

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