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For Release: Aug. 26, 2011 – Pamela Williams, Office of Communications – 405/271-5601

State Health Officials Ask for Public’s Help to Find
Woman Adopting Out Puppies in Guthrie Area

The Oklahoma State Department of Health (OSDH) is searching for a woman that was giving away a litter of chow mix puppies in the parking lot of a Guthrie Walgreens last week. One puppy adopted from the litter developed neurologic disease. Rabies testing at the OSDH Public Health Laboratory was inconclusive.

Public health officials are asking this woman or anyone who may know her to contact the OSDH Acute Disease Service’s Epidemiologist-on-Call at (405) 271-4060 or (800) 234-5963 (24/7/365 availability). Public health officials need to speak with this individual to gather additional information regarding the puppies and whether they might have bitten anyone.  

The puppies were being offered for adoption from the Walgreens parking lot at 1621 S. Division Street, in front of the Walmart Supercenter in Guthrie, on Wednesday evening, Aug. 17. They were being distributed by a white female from an older white minivan or station wagon, with rust.  The woman was accompanied by a white male. The puppies were between six and nine weeks of age and tan-brown in color.  

Rabies is a viral disease that can be transmitted to animals and humans mainly by a bite, although other exposures are possible.  Some animals are more likely to be infected with rabies than others, such as skunks and bats.  Warm-blooded mammals including dogs, cats, horses, and cattle can become infected with rabies virus, but generally do not subsequently transmit the virus.  To date in 2011, the OSDH has confirmed 36 animal rabies cases, including six dogs.

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