8 dogs euthanized after confirmed case of rabies in Missouri

May 16, 2016

32 people are receiving post-exposure treatment as a precaution.

The Howell County Health Department in southern Missouri has reported a positive case of rabies in a six-week-old puppy that recently became ill and died. According to KMOV News, officials believe the virus was passed to the puppy from its mother when she killed a rabid skunk and then licked her offspring.

The puppy's mother and the rest of her litter, including a puppy that had already been adopted by another family, had to be euthanized along with a few other unvaccinated dogs-eight dogs in total. Thirty-two people, including children, are now undergoing post-exposure rabies treatment as a precaution.

Eugene Ulmanis, DVM, owner and veterinarian at the Animal Clinic of West Plains in West Plains, Missouri, told local media that because the rabies virus can incubate for as long as two years, the unvaccinated dogs that had been exposed to the positive case posed far too great a risk to people and other animals to just wait and see what happens.