More people, more dogs exposed to rabies in Garner

FROM STAFF REPORTSAugust 18, 2012 

— Exposure to a dog in Garner that tested positive for rabies has led to three more dogs being euthanized, and three more people starting on treatment to protect them from contracting the potentially fatal virus, according to Wake County human services.

Wake County officials confirmed a case of rabies in a dog in Garner on Tuesday. The dog, a 65-pound white Akita with a brindle eye and black muzzle named Susie, was euthanized Tuesday after it was observed to have symptoms of rabies. It was then taken to a state lab, where officials confirmed the dog had rabies.

Initially, four people who came in contact with Susie began a 14-day treatment to prevent rabies from developing. Now, three more people have started treatment after reporting that they had significant contact with the dog. Three dogs that came into contact with the rabid dog have been euthanized.

Susie roamed an area near the intersection of Big Buck Lane and Bushy Branch Drive in Garner. Wake County Animal Control asks anyone who had significant contact with Susie between Thursday, July 26, and Saturday, August 11, to contact their physician immediately. Significant contact includes being bitten, licked on the face or getting saliva in a wound or mucus membrane. Rabies is not transmitted by petting an animal.

State law requires potentially rabid pets to be destroyed unless owners agree to support a six-month quarantine. A total of seven dogs have been reported to have come in contact with Susie during the time the dog showed symptoms of rabies. Four of the dogs are receiving treatment, and three were euthanized.

Wake County will hold a rabies vaccination clinic on Thursday from 4:30 to 7:30 p.m. at Quest Fellowship Church, 5120 Raynor Rd. in Garner. Rabies vaccines will be $5. All pets must be restrained at the clinic, on either a leash or carrier. For a 3-year vaccine, pet owners must bring written proof of previous vaccination; tags alone will not be accepted. Payment is by cash or checks only.

Anyone who sees an animal acting in an unusual manner is urged to call Wake County Animal Control at 919-212-7387 (PETS).

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