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Shelter Medicine Study Guide Final Exam

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Shelter Med Final
Rabies
An acute, progressive, encephalitis leading to death caused by Lyssa virus-genus
Rhabdovirus
This RNA virus is IMMEDIATELY DEACTIVATED WHEN DRIED and does not survive for
any appreciable time in environment.
Currently there is NO Effective Treatment - death usually due to Respiratory Paralysis
The US has been declared Rabies Free of the K-9 variant. But still average 2 - 3 human
deaths annually
Time Interval from Exposure to Rabies to First Symptoms (Incubation Period) Varies
Due to:
o Animal already ill (immune compromised) at the time of exposure?
o Severity of exposure
o Place of exposure on body of animal
o Age of animal
Inoculation site Virus multiplies Enters peripheral nervous system (clinical
signs) Ascends to brain Symptom start Infects salivary glands Shed in saliva
o bite sight affects incubation time
o younger = faster progression
Virus ONLY found in Brain, CSF and Saliva, NOT in Blood, Urine, Feces, Milk or Fur
A scratch from a claw alone is not considered a potential exposure to rabies!
The incubation period for rabies can vary. The mean is 6 weeks. The speed at which the
virus enters the CNS depends upon the inoculation site (bite site) and the amount of
innervation at the site
QUARANTINE” is defined by state regulations as “physical confinement of an animal
during specified time period when animal is monitored for development of disease.”
o Rabies Quarantine is 10 Days
Rabies is ONLY transmissible during the period of salivary shedding!
Incubation Period does not mean Infectious Period
“Housing” a Quarantined animal can be done at various places depending on
vaccination, status of the animal and who it bites
“Quarantined” at animal control facility or vets office should mean:
o Strict isolation
o Handled minimally
o Experienced staff
o Same cage/run after cleaning
o Away from public
o No contact with other animals
o Exercised in escape proof areas

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IF visitation privileges are allowed to owner:
o Require a sign-in book/log
o Staff should accompany owner in order to monitor for possible exposures or to
prevent stealing of animal from custody
o They may be hostile
Primary Reservoir for Rabies in Oklahoma = Skunk
Secondary Reservoir for Rabies in Oklahoma = Bat
Part of Veterinarians’ “responsibilities” is to prevent rabies in humans
o Vaccinate
o Educate- Don’t “pet”/ provoke stray animals, stay away from abnormal acting
wildlife, “choking” cattle
o Incoming Shelter animals should be “screened”
If owner surrenders:
Question about any previous bite behavior “Has he/she bitten
anyone in the past two weeks?”
If stray: Observe for any bite wounds, neurologic symptoms

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Shelter Med Final Rabies • • • • • • • • • • • • • • An acute, progressive, encephalitis leading to death caused by Lyssa virus-genus Rhabdovirus This RNA virus is IMMEDIATELY DEACTIVATED WHEN DRIED and does not survive for any appreciable time in environment. Currently there is NO Effective Treatment - death usually due to Respiratory Paralysis The US has been declared Rabies Free of the K-9 variant. But still average 2 - 3 human deaths annually Time Interval from Exposure to Rabies to First Symptoms (Incubation Period) Varies Due to: o Animal already ill (immune compromised) at the time of exposure? o Severity of exposure o Place of exposure on body of animal o Age of animal Inoculation site → Virus multiplies → Enters peripheral nervous system (clinical signs)→ Ascends to brain → Symptom start → Infects salivary glands → Shed in saliva o bite sight affects incubation time o younger = faster progression Virus ONLY found in Brain, CSF and Saliva, NOT in Blood, Urine, Feces, Milk or Fur A scratch from a claw alone is not considered a potential exposure to rabies! The incubation period for rabies can vary. The mean is 6 weeks. The speed at which the virus enters the CNS depends upon the inoculation site (bite site) and the amount of innervation at the site “QUARANTINE” is defined by state regulations as “physical confinement of an animal during specified time period when animal is monitored for development of disease.” o Rab ...
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