Dr. Shai Rodrig vaccinates a dog against rabies.
(photo credit: GILBOA REGIONAL COUNCIL)
Rabies could be returning to Israel’s North, Gilboa Regional Council officials fear, after a rabid dog killed two other dogs on Sunday.
The small community of Gan Ner reported the unusual incident of a rabid mixed-breed wolf-dog attacking other dogs in the neighborhood.
A team from the Gilboa Veterinary Service was immediately dispatched to capture the dog and treat the other animals with a rabies vaccine. Two dogs died from the attack and 20 other animals came into contact with the rabid dog.
“I am proud of the residents of Gan Ner, the representatives of the local committee and the plenum who took an active part in the capture, and are now showing a caring involvement,” said head veterinarian Dr. Shai Rodrig on Monday.
He thanked local residents who were cooperative in having all pets in the community vaccinated and warned that stray cats could carry the deadly disease as well.
The Gilboa Regional Council held an emergency meeting and have contacted other municipalities and government ministries to properly deal with the situation.
Rabies is a sometimes-incurable infectious disease
transmitted to humans by mammals infected with the rabies virus. There have been only three Israeli deaths from rabies in the past 50 years, all from a 1996 incident.
The number of rabies cases reported in mammals in 2017 – 74 – was 250% that of the previous year, and the number of infected jackals – 47 – was almost 10 times as large as in 2016. By comparison, there were only nine rabid animals, six of them jackals, in 2006.Judy Siegel-Itzkovich contributed to this report.
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