Protect pets from wild animals: experts

By Alison Hsiao  /  Staff reporter

Sat, Sep 14, 2013 - Page 3

The Central Epidemic Command Center urged people to protect pet dogs or cats not-yet-vaccinated and under three-months-old from contact with wild animals to prevent another rabies infection.

The first case of rabies in a dog in Taitung County was confirmed on Tuesday. The infected puppy was less than three months old and had not been vaccinated.

Bureau of Animal and Plant Health Inspection and Quarantine Director Chang Su-san (張淑賢) said yesterday that there are still three puppies in quarantine and under observation in Taitung.

“One of them is three-months-old and has received a vaccination. The other two are one-and-a-half months-old and not vaccinated,” Chang said.

The center said it is planning to purchase more vaccine for humans, as more than half of the 42,000 doses imported since the discovery of the first rabies infection in ferret-badgers have been used.

Post-exposure prophylaxis is to be covered by the National Health Insurance (NHI) instead of being funded by the state, the Centers for Disease Control said.

“The plan now is that the NHI will start covering rabies from Jan. 1,” Centers for Disease Control Deputy Director Chuang Jen-hsiang (莊人祥) said. Chuang added that the complete payment cover plan should be known by next month.