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32 pet dogs euthanized in New Mexico rabies outbreak

Dozens of pet dogs around one New Mexico city have had to be euthanized since December because they were exposed to rabid animals and hadn’t been vaccinated, the state’s health department said Wednesday.

In addition to the 32 dogs that were euthanized, livestock and at least one cat also had to be put down in the Carlsbad area.

In an outbreak documented by state health officials in Eddy County, 22 skunks, one dog and one fox have tested positive for rabies, state health officials announced in a news release.

Twelve people in the county have received medicine for post-rabies exposure.

"This is one of the most concentrated outbreaks of rabies that has been seen in New Mexico for decades," Dr. Paul Ettestad, the health department’s public health veterinarian said in a statement. "Everyone should encourage their family and their neighbors to have their pets vaccinated against rabies to protect their community."

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