From ANIMAL PEOPLE, September 1995:
Post-exposure shots for 665 people
who came into contact with a rabid kitten in a pet
store in Concord, New Hampshire, last October,
together with other essential follow-up, cost $1.5
million, says the CDCP.
The Pet Savers Foundation has pro-
posed establishing a National Rabies Awareness
D a y. “Letters to Congress supporting Rabies
Awareness Day would be very helpful,” Charlie
McGinley of Pet Savers told ANIMAL PEOPLE.
Get details c/o 14 Vanderventer Ave., Port
Washington, NY 11050; 516-944-5025.
Two residents of San Rafael,
California, were bitten by rabid bats in June,
including a 5-year-old boy playing near a backyard
pool and a woman who was swimming. The bats
in each case were apparently attracted by insects
hovering over the water.
A laborer from Anhui province,
China, bit four people including a pregnant
woman on July 19 in the city of Suzhou, a month
after he was bitten by two rabid dogs.
Dr. Johann Bakken of the Duluth
Clinic in Duluth, Minnesota, and Dr. Stephen
Dumler, a University of Maryland pathologist, in
July confirmed their discovery of a new and some-
times fatal disease, human granulocytic ehrlichio-
sis, or HGE, borne by the same ticks who carry
the Lyme disease spirochete. Producing a quick
onset of flu-like symptoms, HGE is known to
have killed at least four people, among fewer than
70 confirmed cases. As many as half of the known
and suspected cases have been found in the New
York counties of Westchester and Putnam––also
heavily hit by both raccoon rabies and Lyme.
The CDCP recorded a record 13,083
Lyme disease cases in 1994, up from 8,257 in
1993. New York had 5,200 cases, Connecticut
had 2,030, and New Jersey had 1,533. Ninety-
five percent of the recorded cases occurred along
the Atlantic seaboard, between Massachusetts and
The New York health department o n
July 20 announced it had caught a mouse carrying
hantavirus in the Bridgehampton home of Verod
Anthony Hopson, who died of the disease in early
May––the second Long Island area victim, after
David Rosenberg, who died in January 1994 after
exposure to infected mouse droppings at his par-
ents’ Shelter Island home. Investigators said 22%
of Long Island mice and 17% of Lower Hudson
Valley mice carry a hantavirus antibody, com-
pared with 0.6% of mice elsewhere in the state.
The ebola virus outbreak that hit Zaire
in January, killing 226 people, is likely to be
declared over on August 24, 12 weeks after the
last known case was discovered. The final seven
victims all survived, after local doctors rejected
outside advice and injected them with blood drawn
from 56 other survivors. The survivors’ antibodies
were successfully transfused, and the last victim
left the Kinshasa hospital on July 31. While
ebola is believed to infect people via contact with
nonhuman primates, the World Health
Organization reported July 13 that tests of 2,000
animals trapped in the area failed to find a trace of
the orgin of this epidemic.
Anthrax in early August killed a
slaughterhouse worker who butchered an infect-
ed cow, and afflicted as many as 150 other people
who ate her meat in Tambov, Russia.
Ear cropping, tail dock-
ing still okay with AVMA
Delegates rejected resolutions to
oppose cropping the ears and docking the tails of
dogs at the July 8-9 annual meeting of the
American Veterinary Medical Association. By
contrast, the Royal College of Veterinary
Surgeons, representing British vets, has sought
to outlaw the procedures since 1992.
The AVMA installed Sherbyn Ostrich
as president, and elected Mary Beth Leininger,
past president of the Michigan VMA, to succeed
him in 1996. “I think my views are a bit more
contemporary than past candidates,” Leininger
said, without clarifying in what way.