Rabies Testing


Any bite or scratch from an animal needs to be reported to Animal Control at 940-761-7824. Hospitals and medical personnel are bound by law to report any bites or scratches as well. This is so that the animal that bit or scratched can be observed for rabies or if unable to be quarantined, have the appropriate procedures followed for rabies testing.

Any animal or human exposure to wildlife, especially one of the top rabies carriers: Bats, Coyotes, Skunks, Raccoons or foxes, should also be reported immediately to 940-761-7824.

Quarantine Procedures
If a domestic animal bites or scratches breaking the victim's skin, a quarantine period of 240 hours from the time of the bite/scratch is required by State law. If the pet is current on vaccinations and contained in the home or fenced yard, a home quarantine may be allowed if the home and owners meet certain guidelines. Otherwise, the animal must be quarantined immediately for the 240 hours at either a veterinary clinic or in the Animal Services Center's quarantine area. If an animal is not current on the rabies vaccination and/or is not confined, the animal must be quarantined immediately for the 240 hours.

Wildlife exposure to pets or humans will require that the wild animal be trapped and euthanized or if already killed by the pet, the head of the animal will be submitted to the State lab in Austin for rabies testing.

Head removal procedures should be completed by a Veterinarian or Animal Services staff. Heads should not be frozen as that interferes with the testing procedures of the brain tissue.

Fees
To quarantine a dog or cat for the mandated 240 hours here at Animal Services, there is a $120 fee. There may also be other fees if the animal is not current on vaccinations and is able to be vaccinated.

There is a fee of $35 to cover the costs of shipping per each head submitted.

If the animal's owner surrenders the animal over to Animal Services in lieu of quarantining the animal, there is a $50 fee to process and ship the specimen for rabies testing.