2012 REGION 7 RABIES REPORT
The 2012 rabies Region 7 report from the Texas Department of State Health Services is in. There were 308 laboratory CONFIRMED rabies cases in our 30 county area with 69 persons and 474 animals exposed to the disease. Rabies is a deadly zoonotic virus. Zoonotic means that humans can contract the disease from animals. 2012 had the second highest number of confirmed animal rabies cases following 2011's record number of 405 positive rabies cases.
Burnet County had 27 positive cases as follows: 11 bats, 1 cat, 1 dog, 10 skunks, 3 foxes, 1 raccoon.
Llano County also had 27 positive cases which were: 5 bats, 1 cat, 11 skunks, 6 raccoons, 4 foxes.
For more information about Region 7's zoonosis control program, or any other public health safety concerns, go to:
TYPHUS DEATH REPORTED IN TRAVIS COUNTY
Please be aware that typhus is a concern here in central Texas. The disease is transmitted by fleas so flea control is paramount for your protection. We do live in a rural community here in Marble Falls and as such we do have wild animals visit our backyards and neighborhoods. Feral cat populations are a big concern as well and those who are feeding feral cats should take proper precautions. As always, the doctors and staff at Highland Lakes Veterinary Clinic are here to help you. We have effective flea control products available for your pets.
According to the Texas Department of State Health Services Infectious Disease Control we should do the following for prevention:
The best way to protect yourself and your family from murine typhus is to:
1.) Clean your yard so that rodents, opossums, and stray cats cannot live there.
2.) Remove any brush or trash, keep the grass mowed, and keep firewood off the ground.
3.) Do not leave pet food out at night as this attracts other animals.
4.) Prevent rodents from living in your house.
5.) Treat for fleas before you begin rodent control in your house or yard. Otherwise, when the rodents die, the fleas will search for new hosts, possibly you and your family. There are several commercial flea control products on the market. Pick one and follow the label instructions.
6.) If you own pets, control the fleas on them regularly. If they come in contact with infected fleas, they could bring them home to you. Ask a veterinarian about flea control products that are safe to use on your pets.
Novartis Animal Health US, Inc. is experiencing a temporary product shortage. They are the makers of both SENTINEL and INTERCEPTOR Flavor Tabs. DO NOT skip giving your pet's heartworm prevention if you run out of your regular preventive medication. We live in a heavily infested heartworm region of the state and it is imperative your pet stays on prevention YEAR ROUND. There are other products available that do protect your pets against heartworms and fleas that we have here already IN STOCK.
HUMAN RABIES DEATHS ASSOCIATED WITH BAT EXPOSURE
Two people have died from rabies after having been exposed to infected bats. A man from Cape Cod, Massachusetts, and a woman from Sumter County in South Carolina have both succumbed to the disease. Texas has large bat populations with many bats wintering over in the Central Texas region. Please contact your health care provider if you have been exposed. Death is likely if treatment has not begun BEFORE symptoms of the disease occur.
Man dies in first Massachusetts rabies case since 1935
South Carolina has first human rabies case in 50 years
PET REGISTRATION FOR MARBLE FALLS RESIDENTS
The City of Marble Falls has a new animal service ordinance that became effective on January 3, 2012. Animals must be registered with the city. The Highlander has a news article about this ordinance. Also, you may call Amanda Langley at the Marble Falls Police Department at 830.693.6311 or e-mail her at firstname.lastname@example.org to get more information or to register your pets.
If you need a new copy of your pet's rabies vaccination certificate, please do not hesitate to call us at 830.693.5438. Lost collars and tags are no longer an issue with microchip implantation. Microchips are permanent identification and last a lifetime! Call us for an appointment if your pet needs vaccinations and/or a microchip. We're here to help.
REGION 7's 2011 CONFIRMED RABIES REPORT
The Texas Department of Health Services has published their 2011 Rabies Incident Report. Burnet County ranked third in the total number of confirmed rabies cases in the state with 57 positive rabies cases. Burnet County is part of Region 7 which consists of 30 counties. Region 7 garnered the highest number of confirmed rabies cases in the state of Texas with Williamson County being #1 overall.
Protect you and your family from unnecessary rabies exposure:
• Do not feed or handle stray, wild or injured animals. They may bite, which
creates a potential rabies exposure.
• Immediately report animal bites to animal control or a health care professional! If
the animal can be proven not to have rabies, bite victims will not need expensive
postexposure rabies vaccinations.
• Keep your pets currently vaccinated against rabies. Rabid animals can enter
fenced yards, pet crates, doggie doors, pens, stalls, kennels and more. A rabid
skunk can bite your pet through the holes in chain link fence. Bats can fly into
high-rise apartments and expose pets there.
• Skunks and bats are the most common animals to have rabies in Texas. Rabies
is spread through the bite of an infected animal.
WINTER AND HOLIDAY HEALTH CONCERNS
An article published by the San Saba News and Star from the Texas Department of State Health Services, Zoonosis Control, provides a list of the most common winter/holiday hazards that are present in our homes during this time of year. Most of us are aware that antifreeze is deadly, but how many of us know how much chocolate is toxic to our pet? Yes, tinsel is beautiful, so beautiful that cats are tempted to ingest it, possibly resulting in an emergency surgery on Christmas Day! Okay... let's not get too carried away here. Just be aware of the things you have in your house and their dangers, prepare for cold snaps, and call us if you need us at 830.693.5438.
Central Texas Poison Center: (800) 764-7661 (1-800-POISON-1)
ASPCA National Animal Poison control Center: (800) 548-2423
CANINE FLU OUTBREAK
There have been confirmed cases of the canine flu (H3N8 virus) in the San Antonio area. Reports are that the outbreak has spread to both the Austin and the Dallas/Ft. Worth areas. This virus is highly contagious and can result in death. The canine flu is not infectious to humans. The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) has a FAQ page about canine flu.
Highland Lakes Veterinary Clinic has been vaccinating dogs for canine flu for over a year so many of our patients are already protected! We also have plenty of vaccines on-hand and it is a required vaccination for boarding here at HLVC. We take your pet's health seriously and believe that preventative medicine is key.
BURNET COUNTY HAS HIGH NUMBERS OF POSITIVE RABIES CASES
Burnet County has had high rankings in the number of confirmed rabies cases for the last few years. Information and statistics by county are provided by the Texas Department of State Health Services . As of August, 2011, Burnet County reported 49 confirmed rabies cases. Please vaccinate your dogs, cats, and horses to protect you and your family. Cattle can be vaccinated as well.Call Highland Lakes Veterinary Clinic for further information concerning vaccinating your pets and livestock. 830.693.5438
Temperatures do not have to hit the 100 degree mark to be deadly to pets! Be especially mindful when traveling, as even an 80 degree day can turn a parked car into a solar oven.