Surviving A Canine’s Adolescence

Surviving A Canine’s Adolescence

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Jacque Lynn Schultz, C.P.D.T., Companion Animal Programs Adviser. National Outreach

Those weeks of careful monitoring have finally paid off — you’re now the proud caretaker of a housebroken pup! But wait, is that a yellow stain partway up the drapes? And after you unclip Rex’s leash in the dog run, and he maniacally bounds around for 45 minutes, it still takes a ten-minute game of “catch me if you can” to get him back on-leash to go home. What gives? Your puppy has grown into a teenager.

And what movement! During adolescence, the domestic canine resembles a perpetual-motion machine that requires superhuman stamina to wear out. It’s a good idea to find your pup a friendly pack of other canine adolescents to run with in the safety of an urban dog run or suburban fenced-in yard. If your dog lacks canine friends, send him or her out with your resident human teen to fetch a Frisbee or go jogging.

The Wide World of Spot’s
From the age of 6-18 months, your dog undergoes adolescence — that gawky stage between puppy-hood and adulthood. Physically, your dog has his adult teeth, but he still needs to chew on hard toys. That cottony puppy coat is falling out during one tremendous shedding cycle, allowing the adult coat to grow in. He has almost reached his adult height, but for now is all loose elbows and gangly movement.

Tiring out your canine teen will also save wear and tear on your abode. Chewing often results when a bored, anxious, or curious dog is allowed the run of the house. For the canine adolescent, boredom and curiosity can lead to major household damage via chewing, digging, and general reorganization.

This damage could largely be avoided if caretakers would simply continue to confine their dog in a training crate or dog-proof room whenever no one is around to monitor canine investigations. Canine teens are not yet capable of the consistency it takes to earn the run of the place unsupervised.

Those Paws, Those Eyes … That Smell!
Hormones also play a major role in your canine’s adolescence. Most dogs become sexually mature at eight to twelve months of age; at this time, females will experience their first estrus (heat) cycle and males will begin to lift their legs and show interest in “the ladies.” By spaying or neutering early (between two and six months of age), you can save yourself and your dog such varied experiences as increased indoor urination (females in heat do it to advertise for suitors; for intact males, it’s a way of marking territory), inter-dog aggression (primarily between dogs of the same sex who are compelled to “fight off the competition”), and the complete loss of attention span that attends raging hormones. This also eliminates accidental matings, false pregnancies, and the male teen’s need to taste-test female urine.

Remedying Rover’s Memory Loss
An adolescent, even a neutered one, will experience occasional lapses in attention. At times he may look at you as though you had just addressed him in Mandarin, trying to convince you that you never taught him the sit command. Handle these lapses the same way you would with an untrained dog. Take a step or two backward in your training program and patiently re-teach him the command by luring him into the requested position. Be sure to make it worth his while with the use of positive reinforcement. Keep his focus on you, using favorite toys and treats as lures. And keep your training sessions short and functional, always ending with a game or playtime. If you take away the fun, he or she will show even less interest.

In order to get through your dog’s adolescence, remember to provide plenty of exercise, continue to crate/confine when he or she is unattended, spay or neuter, and keep your training sessions fun. And by all means, hang on to your sense of humor. Although your pup may try your patience, take heart — adolescence is one thing your dog is guaranteed to outgrow!

Source: Petfinder

Pica in Dogs & Cats – Does Your Pet Eat Weird Things?

Pica

Working in an emergency room for almost two decades, I’ve definitely seen my fair share of patients who’ve ingested some weird things – rocks, plastic, feminine hygiene products, hair ties, etc. Sure, dogs and cats love to chew on things, but actually ingesting them is problematic. This unusual habit of consuming objects is called pica. This week I’ve dedicated some time to explore this topic in greater detail. Happy reading!

Pica – What is it?

Pica is simply defined as the ingestion of objects with no nutritional value that confer no benefit to the animal. I think we can all agree a cat ingesting a hair tie or a dog eating a tampon has no nutritional benefit for either of them. Yet, such consumption happens. In fact, it happens all the time. As a board-certified veterinary emergency and critical care specialist, I get to deal with the aftermath of such unusual eating habits – intoxications, acute pancreatitis, and gastrointestinal obstructions.   

Pica

Pica – What causes it?

As some of the sequelae of pica can be life-threatening, I feel strongly it’s essential veterinarians determine the reason why some of our pets choose to eat unusual objects that have no nutritional value. There are a myriad reasons, including:

  • Nutritional Deficiencies – There is some evidence pica is associated with underlying medical conditions, including mineral deficiencies. For this reason, veterinarians will recommend evaluating non-invasive blood and urine tests to screen for abnormalities
  • Boredom – When our pets don’t receive adequate enrichment – physical and mental stimulation – they may choose to consume dangerous and non-nutritious objects.
  • Compulsion – Just as with some humans, compulsive disorders do occur in our pets. Their compulsion may manifest as ingestion of inappropriate objects. Evidence suggests a genetic link in some animals. For example, Siamese and Burmese cats are over-represented for suckling and eating various fabrics, particularly wool.
  • Teething – Puppies and kittens, like infants, like to chew on things when they’re teething. If we don’t provide an appropriate substrate on which our pets can chew, they’ll find their own items, a fact that may not be associated with the safest outcomes.
  • Anxiety – Pets live with anxiety too. As a coping mechanism, they may redirect their anxiety to other inappropriate behaviors, including eating dangerous objects.
  • Early Weaning – Suckling on inanimate objects is occasionally observed in kittens that have been weaned too early.

Pica

Pica – How is it treated?

Adequately treating pica requires determining the underlying cause of the inappropriate behavior in the first place. If a medical problem is documented, appropriate therapy is essential for curbing pica.

Ensuring a pet with pica gets adequate mental and physical stimulation is often helpful. Such activity all contributes to environmental enrichment. Provide appropriate toys. Spending at least 30 minutes per day petting, playing, and interacting with your pet. Redirecting inappropriate behavior to a more acceptable outlet and/or to an energy expending activity can be hugely helpful in curbing pica.

Pica

This is a dog who ingested multiple tampons. Emesis was successfully induced to allow the patient to vomit up the swallowed feminine hygiene products.

For patients with anxiety, determining the source of an animal’s stress is of paramount importance…and often easier said than done. Of course, something as simple as using a basket muzzle when a pet isn’t directly supervised can be effective. Other techniques for treating pica include counter-conditioning and the use of medication. Pet parents will likely find it helpful to partner with a board-certified veterinary behavior specialist to help determine the cause of their pet’s pica.

The take-away message about pica in dogs and cats…

Pica is the inappropriate consumption of items without nutritional value. As such ingestion can be dangerous, so determining the cause and curbing the behavior is essential. Pet parents should work closely with the family veterinarian and board-certified veterinary behavior specialists to develop a logical approach to successfully resolve this health issue.

Wishing you wet-nosed kisses,

CriticalCareDVM

Critical care DVMChristopher G. Byers, DVM, DACVECC, DACVIM (SAIM), CVJ

New Law Allows Pets To Be Buried Alongside Their Humans At Cemeteries

By Christine

New Law Allows Pets To Be Buried

Humans who were looking to be buried with their pets used to have very few options available to them. If they wanted to be buried with their fur babies, they were relegated to the pet cemetery. Those who had been monitoring the situation always found this interesting. If humans had the chance to be buried at a pet cemetery, why shouldn’t animals be able to reside in human cemeteries?

The state of New York has decided to put a stop to this practice. A new law has been passed that finally allows pet owners to bring their fur babies along with them to the great beyond. The law covers a wide range of animals as well. Even if you do not own a dog or cat, you will still have the chance to be buried alongside your most beloved pets going forward.

What an awesome decision on New York’s part. Religious cemeteries are exempt from the ruling and individual cemeteries still have the right to refuse pets if they so choose. One Westchester County pet cemetery reports that at least five humans choose to be buried at this location each year. This is how they are able to spend eternity with their loved ones.

We support this choice and are glad that pet owners finally get the chance to rest in peace alongside the animals that brought them so much joy. After all, why should humans be allowed in pet cemeteries if the reverse is not true? Pets are family members and they should always be treated as such. There is no reason to make such a distinct separation.

New Law Allows Pets To Be Buried

We hope that other states are also willing to follow suit. Gone are the days of having to sneak a pet into the cemetery. Humans used to rely on their family members to perform these sorts of dangerous tasks. Now, there is no sneaking necessary. You can plan to spend all of eternity with your pet if you so choose, as long as you reside in the state of New York.

The cemetery must also be willing to approve. Be sure to share this amazing development with all of your friends and loved ones who wish to be buried with their pet. In a world that is always full of new laws that are confusing to the average person, it is nice to see a law that actually applies to our daily concerns.

Source: Goodfullness

 

Durban pet owners warned to be vigilant as eagles find a taste for furbabies

Durban pet owners

Experts have confirmed that the eagles do not intentionally hunt pets, but see them as potential tasty morsels. Image: iStock

A local expert says he has come across a number of incidents where crowned eagles have mistakenly targeted smaller pets.

Pet owners have been warned to be vigilant, especially for smaller animals, after a number of crowned eagle attacks in the greater Durban area, reports Northglen News.

Although Sunningdale’s Jason Arnold specialises in reptiles and snake rescues, the local resident said he had come across a number of incidents where crowned eagles have mistakenly targeted smaller pets.

“They also don’t hunt pets, but are usually looking for food. I just would like to warn residents in the north Durban area and greater Durban area to be vigilant with their pets, especially the smaller ones. Try and not have them out in wide open spaces during the day when the attacks have occurred,” he said.

Ben Hoffman of Raptor Rescue concurred with Arnold, saying crowned eagles did not hunt pets but were foraging for food.

“We have via our fences and dogs and habitat modification limited the amount of food available to young eagles. The birds do not look at a pet and know it is a pet, and a young hungry eagle just sees a potential meal.

“However, research conducted by Dr Shane Macphearson from UKZN showed that domestic animals comprised less than 1% of their diet. Chickens were the biggest component of the domestic animals group.

“Most of the food of crowned eagles comprised of dassies, small antelope, and hadedas. Responsible small pet owners should build Catios to keep their cats and small dogs safe, and to stop cats killing urban wildlife,” he said

Source: The Citizen

Pet owners warned of spike in sale of non-compliant food

By: Yolisa Tswanya

Pet owners

Cape Town – The Pet Food Industry Association of Southern Africa has warned pet owners of a spike in the sale of non-compliant, mixed and decanted pet foods.

The association said sales had been noted in very informal settings, often on the side of the road, where large buckets or skips of food were being decanted into smaller packets or containers. 

There had also been an increase in sales via social network platforms, such as Facebook Marketplace.

General manager Dominique Kuhlmann said: “In tough economic times, we’re always on the lookout for ways to make more money or to save on everyday essentials. Born out of this need, sale of non-compliant, mixed and decanted pet foods is on the rise. 

“And while there may be a financial benefit to supporting the practice, it’s sadly leaving South African pets and their owners at risk.”

She said while decanting and selling in unmarked packaging was not a new practice, it was synonymous with the informal sector.

“The sale of apparent ‘waste’ product, or ‘sweepings’ is a new trend. In some cases, it appears as though the mixed bags are made up of factory sweepings, which is effectively the waste from the production process which is discarded due to it being unacceptable for consumption. 

“Supporting sales of this nature is supporting the sale of stolen goods, somehow acquired through manipulation of the pet food manufacturer’s waste management process. 

“Also, the growth and accessibility of social media has uncovered a new channel for these sorts of sales.”

She said feeding pets non-compliant food was not advisable and owners needed to ensure that their pets’ various nutritional needs were met.

“Some pet owners have made the decision to feed their pets home-made meals. This practice can be a success when a knowledgeable and trained person formulates the meals, but it would be difficult for the average, unqualified person to understand the exact needs of the pet. 

“Fortunately, we’re spoilt for choice when it comes to choosing the right pet food brand for our pets’ needs and our pockets.”

Kuhlmann said owners needed to check that the pet food they were buying was compliant with the law.

Source: IOL

Vets issue urgent warning after cat is nearly killed from licking a Himalayan salt lamp

Vets issue warning

Maddie Smith’s cat Ruby (pictured) was nearly killed after licking a Himalayan salt lamp

A vet has issued a warning for pet owners after a cat was nearly killed from licking a Himalayan salt lamp in New Zealand.

Maddie Smith noticed her cat, Ruby, was acting strangely, and assumed it was due to the cold weather.

After returning from work that evening, Ruby’s condition had deteriorated and she was unable to walk, eat or drink and was struggling to see and hear. 

Ms Smith took her to a vet who said she was suffering from brain swelling due to sodium poisoning.

Vets issue warning

A vet has issued a warning that Himalayan salt lamps can be life-threatening to pets (stock picture)

Sodium poisoning can be life-threatening for pets, with symptoms including seizures, vomiting, diarrhea and loss of coordination.

Himalayan salt lamps are a common item in many households, and pet owners are being warned to keep an eye on their animalss as the lights can be tempting for them.

In a Facebook post warning other pet owners, Ms Smith said she was unaware that Ruby had been ingesting salt from licking the lamp, and was unaware of the consequences of increased sodium in her system.

Ms Smith has removed the salt lamp from her home.

Vets issue warning

Rose Avenue Vet Hospital/Maddie Smith’s Facebook post warning pet owners about the lamps

Source: Daily Mail

Why you shouldn’t bury your pet in the backyard

By: Rachel Allavena

 bury your pet

Companion animals are part of our families, but inevitably the time comes for us to say goodbye to them due to old age or disease.

Many pet lovers opt to bury their pets in the backyard. However, there are some hidden risks to this, and there are other options that will help other pets, and even the owners who love them.

Donating their body to science, for research and veterinary training, can potentially help hundreds of pets.

Why the backyard isn’t best

Backyard burial may seem like the easiest way to respectfully take care of your pet’s remains. Unfortunately, it can be dangerous for other pets and wildlife. Most pets are put to sleep with an extremely concentrated anaesthetic agent, which results in a very peaceful death (hence the term euthanasia, which means “good death”). However this drug, pentobarbital, persists in the buried body of the pet for up to a year. Any animal scavenging on the remains will be poisoned by the euthanasia solution.

I have seen two cases in my career where this has happened, with serious consequences. In one case a family had their pet mouse put down and buried it in the backyard. The family’s terrier dug up and ate the mouse, and was comatose in intensive care for nearly a week. In another case, two farm dogs scavenged some bones from a cow which had been euthanased on a farm months before. One dog died and the other was seriously ill for several days.

If your pet dies of a disease which could be spread to other animals or even people, their body might also pose a risk. While vaccination has reduced the amount of dangerous pet diseases in the community, some diseases like parvovirus still occur in outbreaks and are very hardy and spread readily between dogs.

This virus causes severe and sometimes fatal gastrointestinal disease in puppies and young dogs. Thankfully there are not many diseases we can catch from our pets, but some – such as salmonellosis and toxoplasmosis – can make sensitive people very ill.

What do to instead

One option is pet crematoriums and cemeteries, which are available in most large cities and regional centres in Australia. The services are very professional and cover a variety of options and price ranges that suit most pet owners. Costs may vary with the size of the pet.

Professional burial or cremation avoids the risks of environmental contamination or disease that might occur with backyard burial. For my own pets which have passed away, I chose cremation which typically costs thousands of rands, and then buried their ashes under a memorial tree in my garden.

However, there is another path. As a veterinary pathologist, my job is to conduct autopsies on animals to determine their cause of death. We also use the knowledge and samples we get from the autopsies to conduct research to improve our understanding of diseases and treatments in both animals and people.

Our pets make excellent “models” of diseases in both pets and people, allowing scientists to study the development and progression of a disease and develop new treatments.

Cancer is the most common cause of death for pet dogs. Many popular breeds get the same cancer at high rates, providing ample valuable research material. These dog cancers are similar in appearance, behaviour, treatments and genetic causes to many human cancers.

What’s more, because dogs share our home environments, but age faster and show more rapid cancer progression than humans, studying dogs provides faster research results. 

Another area where dogs are valuable scientific allies is in the study of rare genetic and developmental diseases in children. As we have bred dogs for specific appearances, from squishy-faced French bulldogs to lanky greyhounds, we have unwittingly created genetic abnormalities. Some of these are close counterparts of rare genetic disorders in children. Thus, dogs can be used to help identify the genetic mutations behind the disease, and how the faulty gene affects human children.

Universities have rigorous ethical reviews for this type of research. However, it is vital that we have the opportunity to take samples of both common and rare pet diseases to form tissue banks. Most of this sampling happens during an autopsy after the pet has died or been put to sleep. These tissue samples are used to research better treatments.

How to donate

If you are interested in donating your pet’s body, your veterinarian can direct you to potential local options. In most large cities this will be the veterinary school at the local university. Alternatively, you can contact the veterinary science school directly through their website or general enquiries telephone number.

Source: IOL

‘The Attenborough Effect’: 53% of people report using less plastic

‘The Attenborough Effect’

A report claims that David Attenborough’s environment documentaries are having a positive impact on the public (Picture: PA)

Over half of consumers say they have reduced the amount of disposable plastic they are using in the last year, according to a report which praises the ‘Attenborough effect’.

The report claims that awareness raising initiatives over the last 12 months, including ‘David Attenborough’s acclaimed TV series Blue Planet II and Our Planet, released on Netflix on April 5th’, are having a positive impact in changing people’s behaviour.

According to the study of 3,833 consumers by GlobalWebIndex into sustainable packaging in the UK and US, 42 per cent of consumers say products that use sustainable materials are important when it comes to their day-to-day purchases.

In the UK, 82 per cent of respondents who value sustainable packaging say it’s important to them because they’re concerned about the future of the environment.

Beyond a general concern for the environment, in the UK, motivations for buying sustainable packaging are more self-directed; focused on a personal desire to be less wasteful.

Importantly, 3 in 10 consumers do not feel they currently have enough information about what packaging can be recycled.

Notably, there is a significant difference in this perception held by women and men, 44 per cent and 29 per cent respectively.

The study also shows that as consumers get older, the gap between affordability and sustainability increases.

‘The Attenborough Effect’

Plastic pollution in the ocean poses a threat to marine biodiversity (Picture: BBC Picture Archives)

For example, affordability is more important in day-to-day purchases for consumers aged 55-64 than it is for consumers aged 16-24.

There’s a 20 percentage-point difference between the age groups when it comes to affordable products.

Sustainable materials are more of a consideration for younger consumers.

Furthermore, the data also shows that Generation Z are 26 per cent more likely to be swayed by other people’s opinion compared to the average internet user.

Their increased exposure to social media and impressionability has magnified the plastics revolution.

‘The Attenborough Effect’

Sustainable materials are more of a consideration for younger consumers (Picture: BBC Picture Archives)

Chase Buckle, trends manager, at GlobalWebIndex said: ‘It may come as a shock to some that the younger consumers are more considerate about sustainable materials than older generations.

‘What is important to note, is that the younger generations grew up during the height of the sustainability crisis with high-profile, environmentalist documentaries widely available on the content platforms they prefer over conventional TV.’

The research also found that consumers are guided mostly by media sources and peer groups, though 1 in 4 internet users say brand messaging has the biggest impact in guiding their views on sustainability.

In the US and UK, 2 in 3 consumers think brands that make a public promise to be sustainable are more trustworthy.

Source: Metro News

 

 

It takes just six minutes for a dog to die in a hot car

By Jan Hoole
Lecturer in Biology, Keele University

It takes just six minutes

The soaring temperatures in Europe and North America have seen a rise in reports of dogs being rescued from hot cars. Police across EnglandWalesScotlandNorthern IrelandIreland, and Canada have all saved dogs from certain death. But in the US, a Great Dane in Juneau, Alaska, a Pitbull Boxer mix in Trussvile, Alabama, and three Rottweilers in Long Island, New York were not so lucky.

Over the years, animal welfare organizations have raised public awareness of the risks: The RSPCA and other UK charities launched the “Dogs Die in Hot Cars” campaign in 2016; the ASPCA message is “It’s hot out! Don’t leave your pet in the car!”; and RSPCA Australiastresses it takes “just six minutes” for a dog to die in a hot car.

Despite this, people continue to leave their dogs in cars. Between 2009 and 2018, the RSPCA had 64,443 reported incidents of animal and heat exposure in England and Wales. Around 90% of calls related to dogs in vehicles. This year the RSPCA emergency hotline received 1,123 reports of animals suffering heat exposure in just one week (June 25 to July 1, 2018). That’s seven calls an hour.

Perhaps this happens because many owners don’t really understand what happens to a dog’s body in overheating and heatstroke. If a dog’s internal temperature goes above 41°C (105.8°F) it is at risk of heatstroke, which only 50% of dogs survive. Some breeds are more susceptible than others—large dogs, dogs with short faces such as bulldogs and boxers, and overweight or long-coated dogs are most at risk—but every dog has the potential to suffer from heatstroke. It doesn’t have to be boiling hot for this to happen either—when it’s 22°C, (71.6°F) outside, the inside of a car can easily reach 47°C within an hour(116.6°F).

The science behind heatstroke

When a dog starts to overheat, it will lose heat by increasing its heart rate and opening up the capillaries in the skin. It will also pant to lose heat through the mucus membranes in its mouth and nose, and may lick its body to cool it by evaporation.

Unlike humans, dogs cannot sweat. And as the heat increases, bodily functions start to break down. The dog enters a vicious spiral where the heart starts to fail and pushes out less blood—which means the heat cannot be carried away—its blood pressure drops, blood pools in the organs and the body goes into shock.

When a dog’s internal temperature reaches 44°C (111.2°F) its circulation will fail, which causes kidney failure, lack of oxygen in the brain, and internal bleeding. At this point, even if you can reverse the physical damage and save the dog’s life, it’s likely to have suffered brain damage, which can result in personality changes, loss of sensory perception and cognitive problems. So it’s not just a case of getting a bit too hot and not being able to cope. It’s total body breakdown.

Dealing with dogs in the heat

Whether the heat stroke is brought on by being left in a hot place—such as a car, kennel or run in full sunlight—or by being exercised in high temperatures, the effect on the body will be the same.

On hot days, keep your dog cool by making sure they have a shady, well ventilated, secure place with access to water. Walk your dog early in the morning and later at night—avoiding the hottest parts of the day. This will also protect your dogs’ paws from getting burnt on hot pavements. Remember, if its uncomfortable to touch with your hand, it’s too hot for your dog to walk on.

If you see signs of overheating, such as panting or breathing loudly, licking the flanks, walking unsteadily or collapsing, wet a towel and drape it over the dog’s back, or directly wet their back and sides to cool by evaporation.

If your dog does suffer from heatstroke, immediately seek the help of a vet. It is a veterinary emergency. If you see a dog in distress in a car on a hot day, phone the police, who will advise you what to do. And please never, ever leave your dog in a car on a hot day.

Source: Quartz

Two children have died in SA this year from rabies – NICD

Two children

There have been five confirmed cases of rabies in humans in SA to date in 2019; three from the Eastern Cape and two from Limpopo. File Picture: Bongani Mbatha/African News Agency(ANA)

Cape Town – The National Institute of Communicable Diseases (NICD) has reported that there have been five confirmed cases of rabies in humans in South Africa to date in 2019; three from the Eastern Cape Province and two from Limpopo Province. These have resulted in the deaths of two children.

Commenting on these rabies fatalities and cases, which were reported in the NICD’s latest Communicable Diseases Communiqué, Dr Pete Vincent of Netcare Travel Clinics and Medicross Tokai, said that they reiterate the importance of educating South Africans about this vaccine-preventable infectious disease, which is invariably fatal if it not managed and treated timeously and appropriately. 

“If you consider that, according to the World Health Organization [WHO], rabies is still responsible for close on 60 000 deaths globally every year, most of them occurring in Africa and Asia, then our track record of rabies prevention here in South Africa looks relatively impressive,” adds Dr Vincent.

“Nevertheless, the threat of rabies, which is contracted from infected animals, is ever present, particularly in our rural areas where many pet dogs are not vaccinated against the virus. In addition, rabies is quite commonly reported among both wild and domestic animals in South Africa.” 

The importance of awareness

“Improved awareness of rabies — including knowledge of what to do in the case of a bite from, or contact with, a rabid animal such as a dog — will go a long way towards assisting in protecting South Africans and our children from rabies. It is important to be aware that a post-exposure prophylaxis vaccine and treatment is available to prevent the disease, but it must be administered appropriately and as soon as possible after exposure to rabies to be effective,” he adds.

“WHO reports that more than 15 million people worldwide receive this life-saving post-exposure vaccination every year. This is an astonishing number and provides an indication of just how widespread the occurrence of rabies infection in humans is and how important this prophylaxis vaccine has become in preventing this infectious disease. A further important measure in controlling rabies, which attacks the nervous system, is the on-going mass vaccination of dogs, which are responsible for the great majority of infections in humans.” 

Dr Vincent recommends that families adopt a three pronged approach to avoiding infection: as far as possible avoid getting bitten by animals or coming into contact with animals that may be infected; know what to do in order to prevent rabies after a bite; and make sure that that you are able to access a medical centre where post exposure prophylaxis is available.  

Source: IOL