2013-08-22 / News

Rabies-feared calf causes no public threat

The results of an animal autopsy performed on the brown calf that was housed in the pen adjacent to Gray’s Ice Cream in Tiverton that was euthanized on July 26, showed no evidence that the calf posed any public health threat.

The testing was conducted at the University of Connecticut veterinary diagnostics lab. The lab determined the calf’s condition was due to complications from parasites that do not cause illness in humans. Therefore, there is no risk to the public who may have had contact with this animal.

On July 26, the owner of the brown calf reported to the Rhode Island state veterinarian that the calf was in poor health. The report came only a few days after a black-and-white calf housed in the same pen had died while under quarantine for observation for rabies. Unfortunately, the cause of the black and white calf’s death was not able to be determined, but since he died while under quarantine for rabies observation, health authorities acted with caution and treated the death as though the calf was infected.

The state Department of Health is still recommending that anyone who has begun rabies treatment as a result of being assessed for exposure should complete the treatment.

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