Rabies is considered one of the deadliest zoonotic diseases. After decades of work, the U.S. was declared to be free of dog rabies in 2007. However, CDC estimates 6% of all dogs imported into the U.S. arrive from counties at high risk for dog rabies. In 2020 alone, CDC identified a 52% increase in the number of inadequately vaccinated dogs that were denied entry into the U.S. from high-risk countries compared with the previous two years. Rabies remains prevalent in many countries and kills 59,000 people annually around the world. Deaths are preventable if vaccinated before onset of symptoms. Emily Pieracci, a CDC veterinary medical officer, said over the last year "there has been a significant increase in the number of imported dogs accompanied with fraudulent or falsified rabies vaccination certificates.” Worldwide dog vaccination programs have been suspended or canceled resulting in an increase in number of canine rabies cases and diseases. U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) said they will temporarily suspend importation of dogs from 113 countries classified as high risk for dog rabies effective July 14, 2021. CDC estimates 1.06 million dogs are imported into the United States annually and estimates the import ban to last a year Importation of dogs’ suspension applies to all dogs and puppies that traveled outside of the United States returning from high-risk countries. Included are dogs arriving from other countries that have been in a high-risk country during the previous six months. CDC TO SUSPEND IMPORT OF DOGS OVER RABIES CONCERNS
Countries currently considered at risk for importing dog rabies into the United States
AFRICA: Algeria, Angola, Benin, Botswana, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cameroon, Central African Republic, Chad, Comoros, Côte D’Ivoire, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Djibouti, Egypt (temporary suspension of importation of dogs fromEgypt until further notice), Equatorial Guinea, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Eswatini (Swaziland), Gabon, Gambia, Ghana, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Kenya, Lesotho, Liberia, Libya, Madagascar, Malawi, Mali, Mauritania, Morocco, Mozambique, Namibia, Niger, Nigeria, Republic of the Congo, Rwanda, Sao Tome and Principe, Senegal, Sierra Leone, Somalia, South Africa, South Sudan, Sudan, Tanzania (including Zanzibar), Togo, Tunisia, Uganda, Western Sahara, Zambia, and Zimbabwe.
AMERICAS AND THE CARIBBEAN: Belize, Bolivia, Brazil, Colombia, Cuba, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, El Salvador, Guatemala, Guyana, Haiti, Honduras, Nicaragua, Peru, Suriname, and Venezuela.
ASIA, THE MIDDLE EAST, AND EASTERN EUROPE: Afghanistan, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Bangladesh, Belarus, Bhutan, Brunei, Cambodia, China, Georgia, India, Indonesia, Iran, Iraq, Jordan, Kazakhstan, Kuwait, Kyrgyzstan, Laos, Lebanon, Malaysia, Moldova, Mongolia, Myanmar, Nepal, North Korea, Oman, Pakistan, Philippines, Qatar, Russia, Saudi Arabia, Sri Lanka, Syria, Tajikistan, Thailand, Timor-Leste (East Timor), Turkey, Turkmenistan, Ukraine, United Arab Emirates, Uzbekistan, Vietnam, and Yemen. Advanced Written Approval Available on Limited, Case-by-Case Basis CDCmay, on a limited basis, grant advancedwritten approval permitting the importation of fully rabies-immunized dogs, six months of age or older, from a high-risk country. Importers are eligible to request a permit to import a dog into the United States: 1. a person must be: a U.S. government employee with work-related relocation orders; 2. or a lawful U.S. resident/citizen relocating back to the United States such as for employment or education;
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