Browsing the archives for the Rabies tag

Rabies in Cats Continues to Decline

Well, this must be awkward—for some, anyhow. In particular, the people who continue to overstate the threat of rabies, leveraging whatever fear they can muster in their ongoing campaign to undermine community cat programs and TNR efforts.
Awkward or not, though, it’s a fact: the number of cats testing positive for rabies in the U.S. declined [...]

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Free-Roaming Cats, Infectious Diseases, and the Zombie Apocalypse

A recently published paper describing free-roaming cats as “a significant public health threat” fails to deliver convincing evidence. In fact, the very work the authors cite undermines, time and time again, their claims.
“Domestic cats are a potential source of numerous infectious disease agents,” write Rick Gerhold and David Jessup, in their paper, “Zoonotic Diseases [...]

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American Bird Conservancy Calls for Killing of Cats

I don’t imagine USA Today has ever been accused of producing substantive journalism. And, judging from a worthless he-said/she-said-we-report-you-decide story in yesterday’s edition, that’s not likely to change anytime soon.
OK, not worthless, exactly. After all, American Bird Conservancy president George Fenwick finally went on record calling for the killing of free-roaming cats: “I detest the [...]

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HAHF-Truths, HAHF-Measures, Full Price (Part 2)

Complaining of the impacts of free-roaming cats on wildlife and the environment, along with a range of public health threats, dozens of veterinarians in Hillsborough County, Florida, have banded together to fight TNR. Evidence suggests, however, that their real concern has nothing to do with the community, native wildlife, or, indeed, with cats. What the [...]

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Facts Felina

As I mentioned in yesterday’s post, No Kill Conference attendees were clearly hungry for more TNR resources—programs and program funding, but also legislation and policies that would more effectively protect unowned cats. It was, therefore, an excellent time to release the first three Vox Felina TNR Fact Sheets.

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Westchester County, NY, Rabies Case

“A rabies alert was posted Tuesday by the Westchester County Department of Health,” reported the Tarrytown Daily Voice earlier this week, “after a police officer shot a stray cat who attacked him after trying to attack a man and woman in Elmsford.”
“When Elmsford Police Department responded, the cat chased the officer into a neighbor’s yard [...]

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Rabies: Some Much-Needed Perspective

Seven minutes and 35 seconds. That’s how long Robert Siegel, co-host of NPR’s All Things Considered, spoke with Bill Wasik and Monica Murphy about their new book, Rabid: A Cultural History of the World’s Most Diabolical Virus.
Cats weren’t mentioned even once.
Was this a massive oversight? A coup perpetrated by the Powerful Cat Lobby, perhaps?
Hardly. “Veterinarians [...]

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Tune In to Animal Wise Radio Sunday!

Tune in tomorrow to Animal Wise Radio, when I’ll be catching up with hosts Mike Fry and Beth Nelson. (It’s been more than seven months!) Among the topics up for discussion: toxoplasmosis, rabies, and typhus (oh, my!).
Listen online—and while you’re at it, why not show your support by “Liking” their Facebook page.

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Arkansas Game and Fish Commission Targets Feral Cats

“The Barnett Access on the Little Red River is being overrun with feral cats,” reported last Tuesday’s edition of The Sun-Times, the local paper in Heber Springs, Arkansas. “Due to the interaction between the public and feral cats, and the risk to human health, the Arkansas Game and Fish Commission is going to begin a [...]

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Oregon Man Diagnosed with Plague

According to last Friday’s USA Today, “Health officials have confirmed that an Oregon man has the plague after he was bitten while trying to take a dead rodent from the mouth of a stray cat.”
“State public health veterinarian Dr. Emilio DeBess said the man was infected when he was bitten by the stray his family [...]

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Never Bet Against Irony

Common Raccoon (Procyon lotor). Image courtesy of Wikimedia Commons and Darkone.
According to a recent story in The Charleston Gazette, the U.S. Department of Agriculture has, in recent years, made great strides in stopping the westward spread of the raccoon variant of the rabies virus. And a promising new vaccine, typically distributed in packets dropped [...]

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Downgrading ABC’s “Perfect Storm”

Once again, the American Bird Conservancy is using scare tactics to gain support for their long-standing witch-hunt against free-roaming cats, this time suggesting a connection between TNR and rabies exposure. Data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention demonstrate no such connection.

Maybe the folks at the American Bird Conservancy were simply feeling left out, [...]

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The Things People Say (or Don’t)—Part 1

Wildlife/bird advocates opposed to TNR are eager to talk to the press, so why won’t they reply to my e-mail?
Just about the time I was writing my response to “Critical Assessment of Claims Regarding Management of Feral Cats by Trap-Neuter-Return” (Conservation Biology, Volume 23, No. 4, 887–894), its lead author, Travis Longcore, began showing up [...]

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