Apr 23, 2015 - Animal Policy    133 Comments

Irresponsible Dog Importation and Illness: an Expert Speaks Out

In the wake of the Midwest canine flu outbreak that has sickened more than 1,100 dogs, we are getting the straight talk we need about dog importation from a canine influenza expert:

“We have absolutely, without a shadow of a doubt, proof that a foreign animal disease has been imported into the U.S.,” Dr. Ed Dubovi said. “I don’t think anyone can look at this situation and say we’re protecting our animal population the best we can.”

[…]

“My concern all along was that someday this virus might make its way here,” he said. “We don’t know how it happened, but it certainly could have come from a dog or a cat. There are multiple international groups who are rescuing dogs from the meat market in Korea and shipping them into the U.S., and we have sketchy quarantine requirements if any at all. Restrictions on the movements of companion animals across borders are somewhat nonexistent.”

Irresponsible importation is an issue we have been concerned about for years. For those who have dismissed or downplayed this threat, the statements from Dr. Dubovi should serve as a wake-up call.

Now the question is: how can these words translate into action?

Saving the lives of dogs is a noble goal, nobody will argue with that. But when good intentions lead to illness and even death, you’re doing it wrong. Try telling somebody who lost their beloved pet that “it’s the thought that counts.”

Humane rescue operation importing large numbers of dogs from the Middle East, 2006. Photo courtesy of Sheryl Shapiro, CDC New York Quarantine Station.

Humane rescue operation importing large numbers of dogs from the Middle East, 2006. Photo courtesy of Sheryl Shapiro, CDC New York Quarantine Station.

  • BlueSky

    I’ve been concerned about this for years. Yet, when I drive to/from Canada with my dog, I get a health certificate from my vet stating that he is free of disease.

    • Jackie Phillips

      Do do other animals coming into the country.

  • laurelladesborough

    I am very happy to see this message on this site! Considering that our dogs and our native wildlife are now put at risk by these “rescue” imports from Asia, it is clear that there needs to be a serious review of import regulations on dogs and cats. I would hope the USDA will put in place a new set of regulations put in place that protect our dogs and native species. Considering that all bird imports have a strict 30 day quarantine along with testing and medication, it only makes sense to place serious quarantine and testing regulations on imported dogs and cats. When owners are having their dogs die from this imported virus, it is certainly time to take action!

    • Huskymum

      There are dogs like mine, show dogs, working dogs and pet dogs that are well cared for and not a risk at all who travel back and forth between countries. THE issue here is rescues. They are deliberately skirting requirements and bringing in unhealthy dogs or dogs with unknown backgrounds. THEY are the importers who need to be stopped. It is not all dogs. Stop the source.

      • laurelladesborough

        Huskymum, I am sorry if I gave the impression that ALL dogs imported, transported, etc. between countries were the problem. It is quite clear to me that the rescue dogs are the problem….and those importing them need to be stopped until they have a much more responsible means of doing so. Certainly we need to protect our dogs and our wildlife.

        • Jackie Phillips

          How is it clear to use that only adopted dogs are causing problems? You mean you want to stop the competition from breeders? You don’t want to help homeless animals, only expensive dogs from breeders.

          • Chuck Hawkes

            wow twist her words it is the imported dog from other countries that are strays or meat dogs that are bring these viruses in to this countries and to import a breeder dog from another country you have to have a health certificate issued by that countries vet. These rescue dogs they are bring in from overseas are not required to have health certificates since they do not fly commercial jets.

      • Tom

        No greater wells of disease than at Korean and Chinese dog farms I’ve been to both countries and although I am not opposed to eating dog and have eaten it in Mexico at least I want the dog to be outwardly healthy?? If it where a cow that the Chinese where slaughtering anyone would be a fool to eat such a diseased looking anima even as a vet I say disgusting?!!

        • NYDogWhisperer

          I have only the worst things to say to you but the people who control this page would not let it through. People like you who have no understanding of how beautiful these dogs are, how sensitive, smart and loving, only people like you would eat dog meat and support such a cruel and disgusting industry. Shame on you and others like you. I hope they allow this post to go through and I’m surprised that no one else has spoken up, unless the people who screen have as little heart and compassion as you do.

          • Chuck Hawkes

            he never said that he supported them he just made a statement that he has eaten it. Please don’t assume what people say.

          • Jackie Phillips

            Oh, brother. He was saying the dogs have diseases that are transferred to humans.

      • DC

        There is still risk associated with translocation of animals within the nation. Chagas disease, for example. Transporting dogs from the south to areas without this disease can introduce it to the insect population much like West Nile has been spread. http://wwwnc.cdc.gov/eid/article/20/8/13-1843_article

        • DC

          of course, this would be true when pets move with their owners it’s the large numbers that will make the risk notable.

  • Arnold L. Goldman DVM, MPH

    It has always been ironic that a vast regulatory enterprise exists to protect Americans and American food animals from Foreign Animal Diseases, “FAD.” The FAD control infrastructure of the USDA is the largest employer of veterinarians in the world, and they along with tens of thousands of others, all collaborate to protect our animal agriculture, our people and our economy from devastating animal diseases that exist elsewhere, but not here. Movement of horses, cattles, pigs, goats, sheep, fish, birds or products made from any of them, are highly restricted and regulated as they move across our borders, indeed far more so than are foreign people. Yet when it comes to pet species animals, especially dogs, far less restrictive regulations and policy exists. We cannot have it both ways and keep our domestic animals healthy and country safe. Controls should ensure that FAD stays foreign.

    • Tom

      Dr at the US Mexican border we are now cannot bring puppies across unless they are 3 months old and have been vaccinated for rabies and then the person receiving the puppy ie pet store or private customer must sign a form that they will keep the puppy at their premises for 30 days. Unfortunately for most pet shops they cannot sell four month old puppies the customers want them at eight weeks! Now there has never been a case of rabies from Mexico to this country when the pet was sourced from a Mexican kennel and only two cases from dogs purchased in front of a bar in San Diego from a smuggled puppy!? Surprisingly enough the vets at the border are not USDA vets but from the CDC generally and let’s say to be polite not well versed in canines?! This law is a CDC law controlled by them not the USDA has never made any sense to me? A Mexican vet.

      • Jackie Phillips

        There aren’t vets sitting at any border. US Customs is at all borders, no matter how the arrival. They check all paperwork for all animals. Period. End of story. They confirm all documentation.

        • Tom

          Jackie you don’t know what you’re talking about if I bring a load of puppies across the Mexican border into Texas I must contact the CDC ahead of time so they can arrange to have a vet there to check both health certificates and sometimes some or all of the puppies! I have crossed dozens of times from my ranch in Mexico and each time I have called ahead and they will have a CDC vet there or a local vet hired to check the puppies. They must be three months and rabies vaccinated for rabies and health cert and the buyer must sign a form guaranteeing they will keep the puppies for 30 days on their property,otherwise you aren’t allowed to bring them in! Now if you cross with a single dog they just glance at the paperwork and off you go. Show up with a hundred puppies and they’ll have a vet there. This is federal law.

        • DC

          Jackie, please. If only NAIA could receive donations based on the number of posts, this would be lovely but….

      • DC

        Small animal and large animal vets do go to the same schools but the details do get lost by the time they are applied. An emergency vet once patched up a cat found badly injured out of the goodness of her heart. When animal control contacted her about Rabies protocol, she said she had never even considered the injuries could be bites or that the attacker could have been a wild animal/Rabies vector. Never even considered it.

  • Pat Dukes

    This is very important information, particularly for those of us involved in both pure bred dog sports and breed rescue. Thank you for bringing it to our attention and giving us the facts.

    • Jackie Phillips

      FYI Mixed Breeds and adopted dogs also compete in sports and there are rescues who do all breed and all dog rescue. Dog sports are not for expensive purebreds only.

      • Chuck Hawkes

        well are we not a little on edge

  • Diane Richardson

    It is currently HARDER for a person to import a puppy from a reputable breeder of healthy dogs from most Countries than it is for these “rescue groups” to import unsocialized Korea Meat dogs which brought this flu here. What the hell? I did rescue 10 years I am not against good rescue, but good rescue means meaningful quarantine of these unknown background and meat market dogs. meaningful means 2 weeks in a quarantine facility and 4 weeks in a foster home where they do not leave the property! One group bragged that their dogs from Korea were “quarantined” 24 hrs at a vet before shipping and “like 2 days” at a vet here in the US…….

    • Esoterical

      Then where are the people who are paid to enforce the regulations? Why is it a rescue’s fault if nobody is steering them in the right direction concerning the health of the imported and domestic animals? Shouldn’t the vets tending to these dogs know this information and either keep the animals quarantined or ensure that the rescue does? I would hope they know – are they partly to blame for being ignorant – or rather they don’t want these dogs taking up any of their paid boarding space.

      • Ruby

        The US does not have quarantine requirements.
        Keeping a dog or cat for 24-48 hours is a joke and NO WAY to determine if they are healthy OR NOT. Chances are IF someone is bringing stray dogs into the US they are NOT healthy. They Will have a huge likelihood of harboring some type of disease. Rabies can lay dormant for MONTHS. So if the persons responsible for these transports is NOT ethical and honest then we Will have more disease here & many of the diseases are zoonotic. The pass from animal to human like rabies. Currently there are about a dozen people in Virginia That are going through the rabies vaccines series after being exposed TO AN IMPORTED STRAY that was positive for rabies. Of course there is more to the story then I know. I suppose someone got bit. You can test a live animal for the virus. The brain must be examined.

        • Jackie Phillips

          US Customs has strict requirements for all animals coming in, and they don’t have different standards for different groups.

        • Jackie Phillips

          If you actually knew anything about Customs, the health checks and vaccinations all are done before coming in, not afterwards, Why would it matter afterwards? The animal is already in the country.

          • Chuck Hawkes

            Australia has booted out some of these organizations that were stealing dogs from their country to send to shelters in the US

      • Barbara B.

        IMO Anyone in rescue should have a working knowledge of any and all diseases and realize what is at stake. There are not enough people to supervise the many retail rescues or laws on the books to provide checks and balances f any kind. Including adopting your lost pet out before you can find out where it is & not giving it back to you.

        • Donwanna Behere

          I doubt they’d care. Importing dogs is a cash cow for some agencies. They collect donations for transportation and vetting, then sell the dogs for hundreds of dollars each. Why let a something like disease upset a good thing?

          • DC

            Exactly. 15 dogs per month at $400 each is $72K. There are costs associated but many times the puppies are vetted by the shelters preparing them for transport so a once a month trip provides a fairly good living. Many transporters are able to travel every weekend which nets 4 fold.

          • NYDogWhisperer

            $6000.00. STill a nice profit. But remember that it takes a lot of time and things not so obvious to others to make this happen.

          • Jackie Phillips

            Definitely garbage spread by envious breeders who don’t like rescues taking away their business.

        • DC

          USDA may be addressing this now. There has never been an exemption for dog dealers who call their sales “adoption” but the USDA just looked the other way and did not require shelters or rescues to comply with dog bunching regulations. They have officially made it clear that this exemption was never official and they will respond to complaints whether the agency re-homing dogs is a class B dealer or a rescue transport in the future.

          • Jackie Phillips

            That is total BS. Customs is not going to waive their health requirements. When I adopted a dog from Thailand in 2012, the health checks were extensive and the documentation for her vaccinations were all there by a reputable rescue. I would do it again. Repeat: Customs does not have different standards for different groups.

          • Chuck Hawkes

            did your dog come in with 30 other dogs?

          • DC

            Several posts have been made to you, Jackie, to explain that Customs does not enforce dog import regulations. The CDC sets the regulations and they DO allow different rules for different countries. Maybe it will help to show you the Customs web page that directs you to a CDC web page. https://help.cbp.gov/app/answers/detail/a_id/55/~/pets—dogs%2C-rabies-vaccines

        • Jackie Phillips

          Wrong. Show your proof. Any animal going through Customs must follow the same rules and regs. You sound like an envious breeder who doesn’t like rescues taking away your business.

      • Esoterical

        Not sure where you’re getting your info, Ruby, but rabies cannot lie dormant for months. The symptoms start to show within 10 days to two weeks progressing in nature. A rabies titer will show antigens from the vaccination as well as being exposed, so any assumptions made without the complete story from a medical standpoint is just hearsay or embellishment of the truth, and fear mongering which usually leads to ignorant angry mob syndrome. Yes, the post-mortem brain is currently the only definitive way to diagnose.

        Most people would be advised to get a series of rabies shots if bitten or scratched by any animal for which there is no vaccination history record, whether domestically obtained or brought in from out of the country.

        • Tom

          I beg to differ there have been cases of rabies in both man and animals that took up to 6 months to manifest themselves in clinical signs,not sure where your getting your information? A Mexican vet.

        • Janipurr

          Rabies can ABSOLUTELY lie dormant for as long as 6 months. Most commonly it presents symptoms within 2 weeks, but a 6 month dormancy is not unusual.

        • DC

          You are mistaken. IF a dog bites and has Rabies in his saliva at the time of the bite, he will die within 10 days. But a dog can be infected with Rabies for months before symptoms (biting).

          • Diane Richardson

            actually no, an animal can carry rabies for months. Skunks come out of hibernation with active rabies even though they may have been in torpor for a couple months
            “17. HOW LONG CAN RABIES REMAIN DORMANT? Rabies generally displays its signs and
            symptoms after a two-week period but has been documented in some cases to remain dormant
            for up to 12 months, possibly longer. Frozen brain tissue may allow the virus to remain viable as
            long as the tissue exists in a solid form.” http://www.geaugacountyhealth.org/pdfs/RabiesFNF.pdf
            “Majority of the cases have an incubation period between 31 and 90 days. In the literature, the overall reported incubation period varies from 30 days in 30% of the cases, 31–90 days in 54%, greater than 90 days in 15% and in 1% of the cases beyond 1 year is recorded.[3] In a cohort of 47 cases studied following autopsy at a single center in South India, the median incubation period recorded was 60 days (range 7 days to 4 years).[4]

            A case of rabies in a Vietnamese girl who immigrated to Australia was reported, with the incubation period exceeding 6.5 years.[5] The preliminary genetic analysis of the viral genome in this case suggested likely origin from Southeast Asia” http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3424805/

          • DC

            The problem is that both are true. People who are bitten can be treated right away but animals also can be infected with Rabies for months before they show symptoms. They are not able to infect other animals from a bite until that final stage. There is a compendium with all the details but believe me, you are not alone. ACOS and vets argue this very issue all the time.

      • Jackie Phillips

        It is called US Customs.

        • DC

          Stated and refuted. Over and over.

      • DC

        That’s just it. The regulations we have in place did not predict that we would run out of mixed breed rescue puppies…..ever. Due to low cost neutering and restrictions on intact dogs of all breeds, importing puppies is now necessary to meet the demand for dogs who have a sad story. It would be great if buyers wanted purposely bred, socialized, heath checked puppies but they don’t.

    • NYDogWhisperer

      Which group was that? Started with Y?

    • Jackie Phillips

      That is a bunch of baloney. US Customs controls everything that comes in and there is no difference from one animal to the next. All animals must follow the exact same requirements whether they came from an expensive kennel in Germany or a Korean Dog Meat Farm. Everything is identical, so stop spreading lies and false statements.

      • Tom

        Like these rescuers won’t lie to obtain their goals when everyone knows their whole story is a lie!! Period! They routinely back date health certificates because they have tired to get me to do it when bringing in mutts from where I live in Mexico and also show that the rabies was given 40 days before being imported?! I won’t do it but many vets in Mexico will for a few extra pesos after all they could care less what happens to dogs or people in the US. Don’t say this is a bunch of baloney because I have been approached by three different ” rescues” an American vet living in Mexico !!

      • Chuck Hawkes

        actual that is not true do the research before you call people a lair. They come in on private jets and do not require health certificates like you have to have on commercial airlines and then they go through customs for commercial there is no quarantine and the viruses they are giving to our dogs is a true fact.

  • Jamie Coughlin

    Purebred dogs and cats are imported all the time, pet dogs and cats are imported when their owners move to the US, stray animals hitchhike rides on various transport systems now and again. Until they can isolate WHAT and WHERE this disease came from there is no point in blaming rescue animals.

    • fearnot

      rescue animals come from the streets and are housed in large groups. few if any are vaccinated.. rabies is rampant in many places where rescue dogs live . Pet dogs owned by people are not the source of these diseases as they are ,in the main ,properly vetted.Rescue animals are brought in by the THOUSANDS.. so yes I blame the rescuers for their lack of responsibility to our own pets here in the USA

      • Esoterical

        What rescues in what country are you referring to? Many “rescues” in the U.S. WERE pets as we have a much larger pet retention problem than any overpopulation problem.

        Are you referring to animals gathered up in foreign countries like Korea and Spain? If brought here, they are vetted immediately and are supposed to be quarantined for a set amount of time. The regulations are in place; they need to be enforced by the folks paid to do so!

        • Ruby

          We do not have a proper quarantine. Anything LESS then 14 days Will usually show Nothing. Rabies can be harbored in the body for MONTHS. So picking up stray holding them a month and sending em here does NOTHING for any animal infected with rabies. Ask the dozen people in Virginia going through rabies treatment NOW. After exposure from An IMPORTED STRAY!!

          • Esoterical

            As stated below, regulations are in place for importation – had you bothered to check any of the regs. Again, rabies cannot be harbored in the body for months. You’re quoting ridiculousness that anti-import groups have conjured up as scare tactics. The same folks who keep spouting that because money changed hands, it’s a sale and not an adoption fee. Please…

          • Gail Forrest

            Right back at you – money exchanges hands – a contract is signed – money is deposited by the rescue from the transfer of the animal. if it walks like a duck, quacks like a duck – its a damn duck

          • Chuck Hawkes

            you are just putting your head in the sand and maybe if you wake up and watch the news once in awhile you would see it for your self

        • Gail Forrest

          Possibly the importation recently by the Atlanta Golden Rescue – when there were over 1000 Goldens listed on Petfinder looking for homes???? and those dogs, got sick with the flu and parvo within 2 weeks of arrival causing the whole rescue and boarding facility to be put on quarantine by the CDA – please do some research and fact finding

        • Chuck Hawkes

          than why did they bring viruses

    • Gail Forrest

      Did you not read the article – it has been proven that one of the imported “allegeded” Korean Meat dogs brought the Canine Flu to Chicago – The Goldens from Turkey also brought Canine Flu and I believe they also broke with Parvo shortly after arrival – this is not guessing or speculation – its a fact

  • Jamie Coughlin

    A health certificate can only state that an animal is healthy AT THE TIME the exam was done. Any animal can appear healthy and still be carrying something. Has this disease been traced to any imported rescue animal?

    • Ruby

      There are about a dozen people in Virginia that at currently going through the rabies vaccines since they were exposed to a rabid imported STRAY brought here by #reskewers… Not rescue!
      Putting all of US and OUR animals at risk is NOT rescue, however we can call it RESKEW!!

  • Steffanie Goltra Byrnes

    Why are we importing dogs when we have homeless animals here? How fair that our pets are suffering now.

    • DC

      We don’t have enough homeless animals to place with families. Half of the homeless animals are quickly adopted. The other half have serious health and behavior issues that families can not take on without experience. Many experienced people do just that but for some families an elderly heartworm positive dog who bites children is not going to work.

      • Chuck Hawkes

        there is always breeders with puppies since we have taken care of the situation

      • Jackie Phillips

        Really? Where are your proof of statistics? The vast majority of animals in shelters are there due to human issues and not related to anything about the animals. Common issues are loss of home and job. Too many animals. Moving. Landlord won’t allow. Female got pregnant and had puppies. Unclaimed strays.

        “but for some families an elderly heartworm positive dog who bites children.” Geez, talk about making things up to support more garbage.

        • DC

          Yes, the reasons dogs are homeless are people problems. But more people want second hand dogs than there are second hand dogs who need new families. At the shelter where I work full time we have a waiting list for dogs. I have to to talk people out of taking a dog we have now because they don’t want to wait for a dog who is a better match for them. And even so, 10-20% of the new families I find will ALSO have a family crisis in a few years and the dog will need another new home.

          I’m not making up the older, sick dogs. You can meet them any day at my office.

    • Jackie Phillips

      An animal’s need is not determined by a city, county, state or country border or an ocean or common language. One dog is not more important because of their location or country of birth. All animals are important.

  • Ashley Dancho

    As much as I love dogs this needs to stop. There are animals needing rescue all over the world. We can’t save them all. I have been hearing about the huge amount of dogs being imported by so called rescues while they say over population here is so bad many dogs are dying. The truth is that these rescue do not have enough dogs here to sell so they have to import them while blaming American breeders for the over population. I don’t want to risk the lives of my beloved dogs by these rescues being brought in with all kinds of diseases our dogs aren’t immune to. We need to show some sense here and stop these rescues from risking our beloved dogs NOW!

    • Esoterical

      Rescues don’t “sell” dogs…

      • fearnot

        Really you mean they give them away? Children are adopted.. animals are bought and sold..

        • Esoterical

          There is an adoption fee associated with children, the same as with animals. Neither are “bought and sold” unless you’re talking about trafficking (both human and animal) which is a completely different topic, or purchasing an animal from a breeder.

          Rescues, shelters, and humane societies do not “sell” animals. The adoption fee covers the care, at a very discounted price, that was given to that animal during its time in rescue or the shelter, and also put towards the care of the next animals brought into rescue. And, yes, sometimes they actually are given away – like senior animals, free feline adoption days, and some that are special needs, or, they are sponsored by others who wish to get the animals adopted quicker.

          You’re either very misinformed or angry about an experience you had. If you’re on an animal blog, I would think you’d know a bit more about the process, but it’s never too late to learn.

          • Steve O

            The exchange of money has been given the name of “adoption” to satisfy the IRS requirements for considering that money a donation to a charity. Since many shelters are not 501.3c and operate as for profit, the gray area has widened on the purchase of dogs from shelters.

          • DC

            Not so. The IRS allows groups who form to rehome dogs to be non profit because homeless dogs is a problem that effects the community. They still consider sales of puppies or tshirts to be “sales”. But non profit don’t have to pay taxes on their sales because their mission is seen as beneficial to the greater good. It’s still a sale and they still can pay salaries of any amount. They just don’t have to pay corporate or sales taxes.

          • Chuck Hawkes

            depends on what they do with the money

          • Grace H

            Money changes hands. Rescues SELL their animals to BUYERS. Calling it adoption is fuzzy “heartwarming” semantics. I support rescues with time and money. I am not anti-rescues. But I am anti-BS.

          • NYDogWhisperer

            There are unfortunately certain rescues, like North Shore that bring puppies up from the South and they do make money on them. I know of a local SPCA that does bring puppies up because they don’t make enough money on local dogs. They say that people want puppies.

          • Ruby

            I hope you can take your own advice. Donations of cash & vets time donations provide most of the care for the pound puppies. Then they are sold for $250- $350 I’ve seen prices as high as $850 for a stray dog. Adoption fees are for lawyer fees, court fees, and often times there are fees depending on the county the child is being adopted from. These fees DO NOT apply to animals.

          • DC

            I work full time in a shelter. Accepting money for a dog is a sale. I agree that some shelters and rescues put more into a pet readying him or her for a new home than they recoup with fees but that is because they vet and neuter. Transporters do not need to do so. They pick up vetted dogs from shelters and have the new owners sign a contract to neuter. They also charge several hundred dollars for adoption rather than the under $100 that shelters charge.

          • Jackie Phillips

            Shame on you for working in a shelter and having such an bad attitude. Government shelters and private shelters and rescues are all non-profit and any money is a donation. That is not true for breeders. They sell their animals. They don’t accept donations.

          • Chuck Hawkes

            actual they have been ruled that they are also selling pets with the case in San Diego where they tried to stop pet shops from selling dogs and cats and public could only adopt from shelters and rescues

          • Chuck Hawkes

            actual that is what a pet shop does has to cover the cost of the animal so I guess that is a adoption fee also as they fins that new dog or puppy a home

      • Ruby

        Money changes hands it is a sale!

      • Tom

        Oh really do you think a dog they got a raid of a kennel that was free and they are selling it two days later at Petco is not selling? A rose by any other name!? Of course I always wonder how they can sell them two days after ” rescuing” them when there in such terrible condition most of these rescues are con artists!! BS machines!!

      • Chuck Hawkes

        yes they do, you can’t go in there and just take one home it requires money and some charge as much as a pet puppy from a breeder

  • Esoterical

    The regulations are in place. The USDA is going to argue that they don’t have enough staff to properly execute them. The same old song and dance. The answer seems to be to make sure there ARE enough staff to execute regulations and make sure the proper documentation has come through and rescue operations are following all the protocols.

    I think the “not enough staff” cry comes from all the importation of foreign puppy mill dogs, not rescues. The numbers of these imports are staggering, not to mention the number of deaths of puppies being flown ridiculous miles in ridiculous cargo holds. The USDA cries they don’t have enough staff to maintain border regulations. This disease could have come here in numerous ways. The rescues may be the only people actually following protocol since they have vets present upon landing.

    • Gail Forrest

      please share documentation to prove that puppy mills are importing dogs? and sorry but the news is full of the media reports of rescues importing foreign dogs – mainly not for the profit from the sales of these poor dogs – but the media promotion guarantees the millions of dollars in fundraising listed as assets – Charity Navigator is a handy resource to find out just how much money is being made through sales and fundraising

  • Esoterical

    Latest information from Cornell regarding this flu: http://www.vet.cornell.edu/Baker/News/H3N2canineinfluenza.cfm

  • Kay Mays

    Everyone needs to write their representative on this issue. If numerous people do this subject will be taken more seriously. I have already done so. Lets get the ball rolling on this subject.

    • Jackie Phillips

      Get the ball rolling on what? Banning all adopted dogs from coming in, but allowing only expensive purebreds to come in?

      • Chuck Hawkes

        sorry but most of the dogs that come in are one or two for one owner for breeding purposes and showing and not adopting out

  • Diane Richardson

    Current regulations are such that a pup can be imported from a country CDC says is a rabies free country at 8 weeks old with a health certificate. Any dog/pup over 12 weeks old must have a rabies vaccine and health certificate
    Dogs from countries not on the rabies free list (this includes Canada) are SUPPOSED to have a rabies vaccine and then 30 days later can get a health certificate and be imported. This means pups have to be not less than 4 months old (3 months get the rabies vaccine + a month)
    However somehow rescue groups are getting dogs in with 1-2 day quarantine before and short ones after arriving as short as a couple of days in one of the Korean meat dog rescues!
    EACH state has their own rules as to what must happen for a dog to come into their state. Mine is NH. If an individual is buying a dog/rescue the animal must have a health certificate, first shots if under 12 weeks old plus rabies if over 12 weeks. Rescues being imported for adoption or dogs being imported for resale have the above plus have to be quarantined for 48 hrs. NOT even close to long enough
    Rescues actually are getting around even this pathetic quarantine by selling/adopting the animal to the new owner online and thus the animal is owned and being transported for a new owner not for resale/adoption
    a LOT of sick animals are still getting through
    As I said a MEANINGFUL quarantine would be not less than 2 weeks at vet or quarantine licensed kennel and THEN an additional 2-4 weeks in a foster home before getting a new exam and health certificate. this would catch probably 90% of the diseases/parasites
    However that would cut down on the #s of animals a rescue could crank through and so would be met with huge outcry of objections 🙁

    • Tom

      What I want to know is who will be responsible when one of these rescues sells a dog from Korea and a three year old child contracts rabies and dies. I’ve see people in Mexico die from rabies and it is one of the most horrific deaths possible!! The government in the US should demand that these rescues carry a 5 million dollar liability policy should someone contract rabies from a dog purchased from them!!

      • NYDogWhisperer

        The dogs are given rabies shots and usually kept in foster care or All Dog School for 1-3 months in my experience.

        • Chuck Hawkes

          not in resent times

    • NYDogWhisperer

      All the rescue dogs that I know of from Korea are adult dogs. Mine was between 2-3 years old.

  • Tom

    Form all the reports we get from these animal rescues/ activists kooks our shelters are over flowing and yet last year many of these same groups helped to import more than 246,000 dogs from as far away as Taiwan. If anyone should think this figure is incorrect ( hard to believe right) check the USDA / Aphis website and check number of dogs imported 2014!! When several of these groups where questioned as to why they where doing this they told the investigator that there where not enough dogs in the US to fill the specific needs of people wishing to ” adopt” them???? Figure all this out either we have millions dying or we don’t have enough to fill the need of prospective ” customers” for these dog pounds!!??

    • NYDogWhisperer

      Samoyeds are very hard to come by in the USA and if you don’t want to support puppy mills and backyard breeders, importing them from Korea is the only way to get what you want.

      • Chuck Hawkes

        really I guess you don’t know what you are talking about either.

        • Diane Richardson

          no kidding. I could probably easily find 50 Samoyed breeders in 24 hours IN the US and canada

    • Jackie Phillips

      What a bunch of garbage you spew! What about all the breeders and kennels bringing in purebred German Shepherds and the others , when GS rescues are overflowing? What about all the other purebreds being importing? You are OK with helping breeders, but not homeless animals?

      • Tom

        Very few dogs are imported except for 246,000 mutts last year by rescues for the mutt cry parade face it you don’t know what you’re a talking about an international breeder for forty years!!

      • Chuck Hawkes

        If people import pure breeds it is to broaden there bloodlines from what is here in the US. You know nothing about breeding animals.

  • Jackie Phillips

    Why?

    • DC

      Because puppies under 4 months old are not vaccinated against Rabies. The requirement is waived on import. Since very young puppies are in demand, importing babies gets around the vaccination requirement even from countries that have Rabies in their stray populations. This year an puppy from Egypt was imported into VA. The puppy died of Rabies after biting his new family members. They received post exposure vaccines and are doing well.

      • Jackie Phillips

        US Customs will not waive a rabies vaccination requirement for anyone. That is 100% illegal, and they don’t have double standards for different groups. Stop making up stuff that just bashes great rescues and shelters.

        • Chuck Hawkes

          you don’t get out much did you not read the information for the dogs that just came from South Korea it was in the news, research.

        • Diane Richardson

          US Customs is not who makes the importation rules., The CDC is (check their website for the lists and rules). For countries on their “rabies free” list (which does not mean rabies free it actually means well controlled) puppies under 3 months old CAN enter the country sans rabies vaccine. Puppies from all other countries are supposed to be vaxed for rabies at 3 months old, held for 30 days then shipped. HOWEVER I know of a LOT of puppies from non rabies free countries getting around this by the health certificate issuing vet simply stating they originated in a rabies free country

          • Jackie Phillips

            US. Customs clears all paperwork when an animal is shipped through the airport. All documents are checked thoroughly upon arrival. If you actually knew the process, you wouldn’t be posting lies.
            Diane, if you know of someone breaking federal law, you should report them. If not you are breaking a law. Or, maybe, this is not really happening………………

          • Diane Richardson

            I know a good many people where the paperwork on the puppy says a differnt Country of origin so the pups come through at 8 weeks instead of 4 months ? Customs goes by the export paperwork, they have no clue if it is right or not…rescues are the worst though, the group that brought the first group of Korean meat dogs in did so with only a 24 hr quarantine before shipping instead of the 30 days post rabies vaccine required

          • Jani Martin

            I know someone personally who regularly takes dogs between countries including the US as carry on and falsifies paperwork. She has not been caught and says it’s very easy because they just glance at paperwork and are rarely thorough. Do you think this is the ONLY person out there who does this? And no I haven’t reported her, we are not friends and I do not know her schedule. The airlines and customs should be doing their jobs, and they’re not.

          • Jackie Phillips won’t bother to check any suggested sources and only will repeat her same drivel on other websites and will refute even the most trusted and reliable sources (like the CDC). No point in trying to point facts out to her. She’ll just start insulting you!

      • Diane Richardson

        as far as dogs imported from other Countries. IF the country is on the CDC “rabies free” list they can come in after 8 weeks old. If not on the “rabies free” list the pup has to have a rabies vaccine at 12 weeks and then can be imported 30 days later (4 months old) HOWEVER, some groups are getting around this by having the health cert say the dog was from a rabies free country.
        For dogs in the US though it does happen with some frequency that young pups break with rabies after being transported. A number of years back an animal shelter in Ma had a whole litter from I believe Puerto Rico come down with rabies and you see it periodically all over the eastern states, every now and then yup a pup or litter break with rabies after transport

      • Jackie Phillips

        US Customs doesn’t have different regulations for different animals or different groups. Everything is applied the same. Stop spreading lies.

        • Chuck Hawkes

          have you ever pick up a dog from customs??? I have and they don’t do much there.

        • laurelladesborough

          Jackie Phillips, You are SO wrong. If I want to import a domestic raised bird from any country in the world, it is required to go thru a 30 day quarantine at a USDA approved facility and be tested for several diseases. As for dogs, many from Puerto Rico are brought in on private boats and never see quarantine. That is why they have managed to bring in rabies and screwworm.

          • Jackie Phillips

            Wrong. Private boats or planes follow the same regulations. Look at the story of Johnny Depp and what he tried. No exemptions. Everyone follows the same rules and regs.

          • laurelladesborough

            Johnny Depp…that event took place in AUSTRALIA, not the USA. If everyone was following the rules, how is it that we now have African River blindness, rabies, screwworms and other parasitic diseases being brought into the US by imported dogs? Looks like these dogs are not being quarantined nor vetted.

  • NYDogWhisperer

    My dog came from a horrible situation in Korea. The rescuer that I worked with put her into All Dog Training school where she received medical treatment and a bit of socialization. She was tested for Giardia but it showed up here in the US anyway. But at least she was screened for over a month. I will never regret pulling her from a horrible situation there, one with no hope of a life other than fear and filth. I encourage people to adopt from Korea but more so, I encourage the Korean people to take care of their own. The national dog of Korea, the Jindo, a wonderful breed, is used for meat and abused terribly. Shame on the country for allowing this and shame on any human that sticks dog food into their mouth.

    And DO NOT BUY ANY BOOTS< BAGS OR SHOES FROM FOREIGN COUNTRIES IN THE PACIFIC RIM…THEY ARE MADE FROM TERRIBLE SUFFERING!

  • NYDogWhisperer

    How do we know that the canine flu came from countries like Korea? I recall years ago, there were outbreaks of the canine flu. I would like absolute proof of these before people go spouting fear and lies.

    • Chuck Hawkes

      vets found it from the animals imported

  • NYDogWhisperer

    All dogs from Korea have to get their shots before flying to the USA or Europe.

    • Chuck Hawkes

      only on commercial flights and that is for every country

  • NYDogWhisperer

    Try to get a Samoyed in the Northeast!

    • Chuck Hawkes

      what would be hard in that are you someone that breeders look down on for some reason and don’t qualify for one of there dogs I know lots of Samoyed breeders.

  • Jackie Phillips

    There is not such thing as irresponsible importation. That is all handled by a single federal government branch called US Customs. There are no ways around it and everyone follows the same requirements, no matter what.

  • Jackie Phillips

    Where is your proof?

    • Chuck Hawkes

      already proven read the news

  • While i concur with Dr. Ed Dubovi…my years of experience has not shown other trajectories for the influx of new companion diseases in the US.

    I am NOT a Vet, however I work with Vets daily. I consider myself a learned companion animal person. I’m a lifetimte rescuer, a two time Animal Control Director, and I grew up with my Father and Aunts and Uncles breeding AKC Boxers, Black and Chocolate Labs and Siberian Huskies. I’ve lived on all sides of the companion animal equation.

    First…it is easy to bring animals into the US! It is DIFFICULT to bring animals from the US into other countries! I was Director of AC in Montgomery County, TN…home of Fort Campbell. Over 6,000 animals impounded in a year. My Vet partners and I documented cases of Canine Influenza in my facility..therefore in the county; after routine influxes of Soldiers’ dogs. These loved Soldiers’ pets were brought back to our county after living abroad, to groomers, boarding facilities, day care and many surrendered. Brought into the US without isolation periods or quarantines! Vax records are not enough in these cases.

    Many of us have experienced serious consequences even when animals from out of county/state sheltering/rescue/day care situations are brought into our counties. Influxes of different strains or resistant strains of Bordatella/Aden Virus/Parainfluenza…Parvo… Many of these health issues are contact borne, air borne and water borne; making them very difficult to battle once there is an active case. All of the animals are in distress being warehoused, which compromises immune systems.

    Every animal warehousing facility has its own inherent issues which contribute to the health and loss of health of both the animals AND the human caretakers. Humidity, temperatures, drainage, air exchange, shared air systems, constant water/ feces/ urine on floors and in kennels, chemicals, parades of volunteers and adopters, shared play spaces and the transient impounds themselves.

    The biggest frustration is when a choice between a life/lives and safety has to be made. Unless you’ve worked in it you simply cannot understand. I truly understand “the safety of the herd” practices of shelter medicine. I do however know just how poorly animal warehousing facilities are built for handling inevitable health issues AND the lack of follow through of citizens in vaccinating and being compliant on medical care of animals in their care.

  • bonniedalzell

    Rabies among imported dogs with faked papers not just speculation.

    Rabies in a Dog Imported from Egypt with a Falsified Rabies Vaccination Certificate — Virginia, 2015
    https://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/preview/mmwrhtml/mm6449a2.htm

    partial quote:

    “Public Health Investigation

    After DCLS confirmed the rabies diagnosis, the Virginia
    Department of Health, the New Jersey Department of Health, the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, and CDC initiated human and domestic animal rabies exposure assessments associated with the entire animal shipment. The infectious period for dog A was considered to have begun 10 days before symptom onset and continued until death (i.e., from May 24 to June 5) (2). The investigation also involved the Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, the Pennsylvania Department of Health, U.S. Customs and Border Protection, the foreign airline that transported the animals, the Egyptian Ministry of Health and Population, and the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service.