Why is it (rabies)

Discussion in 'Cattle' started by JeffNY, Jan 22, 2005.

  1. JeffNY

    JeffNY Seeking Type

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    some farms decide to not give shots for rabies? Here it seems foolish to not give shots, we do it every single year. We shot 7 coons once out of the barn during a winter and spring. We sent a coon away and it came back positive for rabies. But some farms don't bother with it, yet someday they might find it was cheaper to give the vaccine. For example, I think all the animals I bought didn't get the vaccine, this spring when we have our hereford group done, we will have the dairy group done. I am also surprised the local fair doesn't require rabbies shots. I'm sorry but if some animal came in, and was sick and came in contact with humans, and other animals, talk about outbreak! I am curious tho, who here doesn't bother with it? I can understand if you live out in the middle of nowhere, and have such a broad area that animals aren't as close together. Here we have woods, vaccant buildings, we have a lot of wildlife. I just know, I don't have to worry if an animal is choking its not because of rabbies. That has happened (reach down the throat deal).


    Jeff
     
  2. Ross

    Ross Moderator Staff Member Supporter

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    Rabies shots on large scale farms are pretty uncommon, I see your point about fairs though. I have at times over 500 sheep that don't get a rabies vacination, it would simply break the bank. I asked my vet once why it wasn't common and his answer was they (ruminants) die too fast with rabies to be a big human health risk, or even a herd risk really.
     

  3. Jena

    Jena Well-Known Member

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    We don't give rabies shots. It is not common here and not recommended by the vet. We have plenty of critters, but I worry more about lepto from coons than rabies.

    Jena
     
  4. dosthouhavemilk

    dosthouhavemilk Well-Known Member Supporter

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    We don't give rabies shots here either. it isn't a huge concern in this area.

    We also have a couple of family of racoons that live upstairsa nd come down at night to feast on cat food and cow feed. :rolleyes:
    If Rabies does become a problem, they will be teh first to go, but for now it isn't a concern.

    Lepto, however, is a problem here as well.
     
  5. Horace Baker

    Horace Baker Well-Known Member

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    I do vaccinate, and I have had a case of rabies. It was in a calf, too young for the vaccination. I took the carcass to the State vet school on my vet's request, they made the diagnosis. My problems were only beginning. The State became involved and quarantined my whole herd for 60 days. I had to build fences within fences to protect the public, and put up warning tape all over the place. My wife and I (and a couple of others who came in contact with the animal) had to undergo rabies shots at $1200. each. Yeah, that's right, rabies shots for an animal are a few bucks, thousands for humans. We paid for everybodies shots out of pocket.
    After issuing the order, compelling me to protect the entire world from my rabid animals (sarcasm intended), the State disappeared. No help of any kind.
    Will I continue to vaccinate? Yes.
    Will I tell anyone if an animal has similar symptoms in the future? I doubt it.
     
  6. Ross

    Ross Moderator Staff Member Supporter

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    What does it cost to vacinate cattle, and is it an annual series or every 2 or 3 years?
     
  7. shepsrus

    shepsrus Member

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    Rabies for large animals is always a yearly vaccine. Cost is about $2 or less per dose. One thing about Rabies vaccines--in order for the animal to be legally recognized as being vaccinated, the vaccine must be administered by a vet. If a herd/animal owner gives the vaccine, the animal would immunologically be protected but not in the eyes of the law.

    Most herd owner do not vaccinate where I live--even though in the dozen years I have lived here, I have seen numerous cases (mostly cattle). It's hard to justify the added cost to a farmer that hasn't seen a case.

    The comment about dying fast (ruminants): I don't agree with your vet, Ross. The cows I have seen with Rabies didn't die too fast that humans were not exposed--keeping in mind these were dairy cows and probably caught a little earlier than a beef animal out on the range would be. In fact, the ones I have seen lingered for several days--even had one eat and drink until the day before it died. The entire family (and myself) went through post-exposure rabies shots because they had drenched/administered oral meds to this cow over the course of several days. All had to endure many painful shots--not to mention the cost!

    Rabies is fatal to anyone that contracts it and is not treated (except for the first human documented that recently survived Rabies). That is why I do vaccinate my animals (although I admit to only having 7 steers). If I were a large-scale producer, I probably would not.

    sheps
     
  8. Horace Baker

    Horace Baker Well-Known Member

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    I believe the protocol for rabies vaccination has changed in the last couple of years. The interval has been extended to several years between shots, some say only one shot is needed. Best to ask your Vet.
     
  9. shepsrus

    shepsrus Member

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    Some rabies vaccine is labelled to be given every three years for small animals--dogs and cats. It depends on your municipality/state if they are required more often than that. For example, the entire state of MN requires Rabies vaxes every 2 yrs whereas WI is every three (funny, since it's the same vaccine).

    For large animals--sheep, cows, horses--the vaccine is labelled for administration every year. I personally believe the vaccine works for longer than a year in large animals, but still give it every year because that's what the label and the law say. I am a vet, and this is what I tell my clients--to vaccinate their large animals every year.

    It's true that the vaccine schedules have changed a lot--I now give distemper shots every three years for dogs/cats over two years of age. This is totally different than when I graduated vet school! So far, the large animal schedules remain yearly. I would suspect that the AVMA will change the recommendations for them soon too (although I think rabies will stay the same).

    respectfully,
    shepsrus (Lesley)
     
  10. JeffNY

    JeffNY Seeking Type

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    If the herd is huge, say 100+ I can see why the cost is high. However think of this, what if by chance one of your animals showed some odd signs and rabies did not come to mind? So you reach down the throat, or get druell over you, etc. Then find it had rabies you get shots, and it costs you 3-4-5-6 times as much as the vaccination. Not only that, what if you figured, hmm animal died of hardware! Yet you come down with the symptoms and cya! Get lucky if you can try the whole coma thing that was recently done, but that if successfull would cost $$$$$$$$$$$$$$$. This spring we will be vaccinating 37 animals The vet uses a seperate needle for every animal, does not charge extra. But the fact ive come across coons in the pasture, and other animals (sick or not), we are cautious. I feel better if im around a cow, and know its vaccinated, in a barn that can bring in coons. We did a great deal of research and had a guy speak about it once, and its nothing to fool with. Any disease isn't good, however this disease can be tricky.


    Jeff
     
  11. Ross

    Ross Moderator Staff Member Supporter

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    Don't get me wrong I wouldn't object to vaccinating all my animals, the pet farm critters get it. Its been a while since I asked about it for cost for a large scale vaccination program. You could always get yourself vaccinated for rabies, its a $200 shot here for humans. High risk people like vets or animal control officers will often get it, I don't know how safe the vaccine is (for people) some are fine some are???

    Shepsrus perhaps I'm misremembering, I keep sheep so perhaps he meant that they die too fast? No matter the cost would have to be substantially less than a small animal and I know (here in Canada) I'd need a vet to admin/monitor the shots, if not actually push the syringe. Still costs about the same if you talk to the vet or he/she is up to their shoulder in muck.

    Just wondering doesn't everybody use a new needle for every injection yet?
     
  12. Jena

    Jena Well-Known Member

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    No. When I give vaccinations, I use a gun. I use the same needle until it gets dull or breaks, then I replace the needle.

    Jena
     
  13. Ross

    Ross Moderator Staff Member Supporter

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    I use a gun too but change needles for every injection. Cheap insurance to slow the spread of disease and a broken needle would be the worst thing to find in a cut of meat!
     
  14. SmokedCow

    SmokedCow Well-Known Member

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    I'll tell you a story....About 10 years ago when my brotheres and sisters showed hogs, a family bought some hogs from IA, and they had rabies....it spread in teh hog bard at the fair with out knowing it...and when they brought them home our cattle, other hogs got rabies...everything had to be put down...That was the only case i know of that had a farm of rabid livestock...we dont worry about it...I think that i read some where the vaccine doesnt really help...since the virus changes....same in FMD.
    AJ
     
  15. Patty0315

    Patty0315 Well-Known Member

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    NY fairs do require rabies shots for animals to be shown, at least every fair I have attended. Rabies is not a big problem upstate. Bait drops are done on a yearly basis. We trap over 130 coons each year , I cannot say that even 1 has looked sick. Pets are vacc here not livestock. I only vacc if I have to. I have healthy animals . I do not like putting more into what I am going to eat or drink the milk from than I have to.

    Preventive rabies shots are a series not just one. Titers are then checked on a yearly basis.

    Keep then coon problems down by keeping the grain room shut. A dog in the barn helps to. If there gets to be to many around get a trapper or hunter to thin them down. Most disease spread due to over crowded conditions. To many animals in a small area is not only bad for the animals but humans as well.

    The biggest spreader of rabies is probally stray cats. That is as far as humans being at risk. My 5 year old went thru shots this year due to a stay cat. We have a new policy. No new cats! If I cannot catch it I will shoot it. Now before I get blasted , think of the pain my 5 year old went thru with a series of 6-7 shots. The stray looked exactly like one of our cats. The only reason I knew it wasnt our is it still had its balls.
     
  16. JeffNY

    JeffNY Seeking Type

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    We do the same with strays, if I can get the opprotunity. No coons in the barn here yet this year, possibly due to the fact we knocked them down.



    But an ounce of prevention is worth a lb of cure. I feel, it's better to be safe than sorry, have the herd done. A farm where we are getting animals Saturday in fact, has their cows done. They milk 750, and have 1500 total. So if a big farm does it, anyone can do it.


    Also as far as the disease changing? There are three strains, and all have vaccines, I beleive its covered in one. But this spring we will get all 37 done, ive seen sick animals here and there, and no thanks no chances here.


    Jeff
     
  17. SmokedCow

    SmokedCow Well-Known Member

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    We had a family whos dog got raies from a skunk.....the WHOLE family...the dads g/f and his daughters b/f had to get rabie shots....she said it was HORRIBLE! i think she had 10 shots in the arm...i guess thats better then 23 or how ever many in the tummy!! ILL TAKE THE ARM!!
    AJ
     
  18. Patty0315

    Patty0315 Well-Known Member

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    The first was 2 shots in th hip or thigh. Then I think it was 5 more shots spred out over several weeks all in the thigh hip area. They are painfull. By the end of the series I had to hold her down.