New policy on pet dogs, cats from US

Posted on Dec 30 2005

The CNMI government has implemented a new quarantine policy for pet dogs and cats coming from the U.S. mainland, as part of efforts to prevent the spread of rabies in the Commonwealth. The policy is effective immediately.

According to the notice issued yesterday by the CNMI Veterinarian’s Office, all pet dogs and cats originating from the U.S. mainland that are certified as currently immunized for rabies by an accredited veterinarian of their state of origin shall be eligible for the mandatory 30-day quarantine in the government facility in As Perdido.

The policy dictates that these pets must be accompanied by a notarized affidavit stating that the animals were raised and kept inside the owner’s house for the six-month period immediately preceding their date of entry into the CNMI.

A 90-day home quarantine shall be required for pets that qualify for the 30-day mandatory, initial quarantine in the government facility.

According to the U.S. National Association of State Public Health Veterinarians Inc., as published in the “Compendium of Animal Rabies Prevention and Control, 2005,” rabies is rare in vaccinated animals.

An animal is currently vaccinated and is considered immunized if the primary vaccination was administered at least 28 days previously and said vaccination was done in accordance with the “Compendium.

Laboratory-confirmed cases of rabies in dogs in the United States decreased from 6,949 in 1947 to 117 in 2003 due to establishment of effective rabies immunization programs. (PR)

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