Dogs in Calhan bitten by a rabid skunk

Posted By elaine on April 5, 2011

Skunk1A pair of dogs in Calhan have been bitten by a rabid skunk and may have been exposed to the fatal disease.

The two small dogs got into a scuffle with the skunk over the weekend and were wounded by the wild animal. The dogs were brought to their veterinarian for treatment; the wounds were minor, but unfortunately the dogs were not vaccinated to protect against rabies.

The skunk was captured and tested; it came back positive for rabies today.

Now the owners have a tough decision to make.

“Rabies is very contagious, with no vaccinations it is likely that these animals will contract the disease,” says Dr Bernadette Albanese with the El Paso County Health Department. “Due to the high risk with rabies the law says the dogs have to be euthanized or under a strict six-month quarantine.”

The first three months of the quarantine has to be at a secured facility approved by the health department, such as a veterinary clinithumbnailCAIKKMCCc. If there is no sign of illness the animal can go home for the remainder of the quarantine.

This means the owner will have a choice of spending thousands of dollars in boarding fees or have to make the heartbreaking decision to put their dogs down. Something the dogs’ vet says could have been prevented.

“We really recommend getting your pets vaccinated,” says Dr. Genevieve Grammar at the Calhan Veterinary Clinic. “It prevents owners from having to make these kinds of decisions.”

The El Paso County Health department adds that not reporting a wild animal bite is a very dangerous decision because humans can contract rabies and once symptoms appear there is no cure.

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4 Responses to “Dogs in Calhan bitten by a rabid skunk”

  1. Deanna Weatherford says:

    Just so all of you know, the dogs were not old enough yet to get vaccinated. I had been told that they had to be six months old before they could receive the rabies vaccination. One puppy was only three months old, the other was five months old. If they would have made it to the six month mark they would have gotten there vaccinations. Unfortunately they did not make it, I had to have them put down. The little one that I know was bitten was already starting to show signs of having rabies. So all of you that are making rude comments, if you don’t know what happened then maybe you should keep your mouths shut!!! Signed: Very Upset Owner of two wonderful little puppies!!!

  2. elaine says:

    Hi Deanna,
    Today we have posted a story explaining this. I am sorry for your family’s loss. I am glad you came forward and talked to us. I think it will make a lot of people get their pets to the vet right away.

  3. nene says:

    you delete my post. yesterday.. but if you read.. HER OWN VET says IN YOUR ARTICLE….. ‘THIS COULD HAVE BEEN PREVENTED”

  4. elaine says:

    Hi Nene,
    It is true that in at least one of the puppies this could have been prevented. The owner even admits that she had bad information and because of that she didn’t get the vaccinations that could have saved the puppy’s life. She feels terrible about it; bawling her eyes out while the veterinarian puts her puppies down. She came forward to tell others that it is a real concern; that it can happen and to make sure that your pets are vaccinated. She is paying for her mistake. We pointed out in the article that “it could have been prevented”; Does she need people to beat her up on this post too? I don’t think so and I won’t allow it on my site. -ES

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