Washington County Doctor Treats Infected Horse

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Washington County veterinarian Todd Anderson might have rabies. He recently treated an Icelandic horse that had to be put down for coming down with the disease.

"I observed it was showing some neurological signs, and said if it didn't make it we needed to submit the brain for rabies testing."

Now two veterinarians, the office staff, and the horse’s owners are being treated as a precautionary measure.

"These owners were particularly involved with their horse, petting it, hugging it, putting their hands in its mouth. They were certainly at a big risk."

Anderson is also concerned about his own health.

"This is not a light topic. This is extremely deadly and I was well exposed even though I've been vaccinated."

Anderson is now waiting to get a booster shot to increase his resistance to the disease. In the meantime he's using his experience to remind people of the importance of getting your pets vaccinated.

Rabies is typically spread through the saliva of infected animals often, but not always, through a bite. Pets should be vaccinated yearly to be safe.

Anderson encourages owners of outdoor pets to be especially cautious. Outdoor pets are more likely to interact with rabid raccoons and other wildlife.