TITLE XL
AGRICULTURE, HORTICULTURE AND ANIMAL HUSBANDRY

CHAPTER 436
DISEASES OF DOMESTIC ANIMALS

Rabies Control

Section 436:106

    436:106 Handling of Dogs, Cats, and Ferrets Bitten by Rabid Animals. –
In the case of dogs, cats, and ferrets known to have been bitten by a rabid animal or to have had a nonbite exposure, the following provisions shall apply:
I. Unvaccinated Dogs, Cats, and Ferrets.
(a) In the case of dogs, cats, and ferrets which are not vaccinated in accordance with RSA 436:100 and which have been bitten by a known rabid animal or have had a nonbite exposure, the dogs, cats, and ferrets which were bitten or exposed to rabies shall be immediately euthanized, unless the owner is unwilling as provided in subparagraph (b) of this paragraph. The owner shall be responsible for the expense of destroying and disposing of the dog, cat, or ferret. In the case of a stray dog or cat whose owner is not known, the rabies control authority shall be responsible for the expense, and such expense shall be paid from the fees collected under RSA 466:4 and 466:6. In the case of a ferret whose owner is not known, the state shall be responsible for the expense.
(b) If the owner is unwilling to destroy the dog, cat, or ferret, strict isolation of the dog, cat, or ferret, in a kennel under veterinary supervision and in cooperation with the local authorities shall be enforced. A dog or cat shall be held in quarantine for a minimum of 4 months. A ferret shall be held in quarantine for a minimum of 6 months. The dog, cat, or ferret shall be vaccinated against rabies 30 days prior to completion of the impoundment. Any illness in the dog, cat, or ferret during confinement or before release shall be evaluated by a licensed veterinarian. If signs suggestive of rabies develop, the animal shall be euthanized and the head sent for examination to the public health laboratory, department of health and human services. The expense of vaccination shall be paid in advance by the owner, and the expense of impoundment shall be paid monthly in advance by the owner. In case of default in payment, the local authority may euthanize the dog, cat, or ferret after a 10-day grace period and the head shall be sent for examination to the public health laboratory, department of health and human services. The expense of euthanizing the dog, cat, or ferret, for disposal of the remains, and for preparing and shipping the head, shall be the responsibility of the owner.
I-a. Dogs, Cats, and Ferrets with Documentation of Expired Vaccination. In the case of dogs, cats, and ferrets in which prior vaccination is documented but has expired and which have been bitten by a known rabid animal or have had a nonbite exposure, the dog, cat, or ferret which was bitten or exposed to rabies shall be handled as follows:
(a) The dog, cat, or ferret shall be immediately revaccinated and confined for a period of 45 days following revaccination. Any illness in the dog, cat, or ferret during confinement or before release shall be evaluated by a licensed veterinarian. If signs suggestive of rabies develop, the animal shall be euthanized and the head sent for examination to the public health laboratory, department of health and human services. The owner of the dog, cat, or ferret shall be responsible for any expense incurred. The type of confinement shall be at the discretion of the local authority. At the completion of confinement, the dog, cat, or ferret shall be examined by a licensed veterinarian and released if found by said veterinarian to be free of any signs of rabies.
(b) If the dog, cat, or ferret is not revaccinated within 96 hours of the exposure, strict isolation of the dog, cat, or ferret, in a kennel under veterinary supervision and in cooperation with the local authorities shall be enforced. A dog or cat shall be held in quarantine for a minimum of 4 months. A ferret shall be held in quarantine for a minimum of 6 months. The dog, cat, or ferret shall be vaccinated against rabies 30 days prior to completion of the impoundment. Any illness in the dog, cat, or ferret during confinement or before release shall be evaluated by a licensed veterinarian. If signs suggestive of rabies develop, the animal shall be euthanized and the head sent for examination to the public health laboratory, department of health and human services. The expense of vaccination shall be paid in advance by the owner, and the expense of impoundment shall be paid monthly in advance by the owner. In case of default in payment, the local authority may euthanize the dog, cat, or ferret after a 10-day grace period and the head shall be sent for examination to the public health laboratory, department of health and human services. The expense of euthanizing the dog, cat, or ferret, for disposal of the remains, and for preparing and shipping the head, shall be the responsibility of the owner.
II. Vaccinated Dogs, Cats, and Ferrets. If the dog, cat, or ferret is vaccinated in accordance with the provisions of RSA 436:100, the dog, cat, or ferret shall be handled as follows:
(a) The dog, cat, or ferret shall be immediately revaccinated and confined for a period of 45 days following revaccination. Any illness in the dog, cat, or ferret during confinement or before release shall be evaluated by a licensed veterinarian. If signs suggestive of rabies develop, the animal shall be euthanized and the head sent for examination to the public health laboratory, department of health and human services. The owner of the dog, cat, or ferret shall be responsible for any expense incurred. The type of confinement shall be at the discretion of the local authority. At the completion of confinement, the dog, cat, or ferret shall be examined by a licensed veterinarian and released if found by said veterinarian to be free of any signs of rabies.
(b) If the dog, cat, or ferret is not immediately revaccinated, the dog, cat or ferret shall be confined in strict isolation in a kennel for 6 months under the supervision of the local authority in cooperation with a licensed veterinarian. The dog, cat, or ferret shall be vaccinated against rabies 30 days prior to completion of the 6-month impoundment. The owner of the dog, cat, or ferret is responsible for all expenses incurred and shall pay each month in advance. If there is default in payment, the local authority may euthanize the dog, cat, or ferret after a 10-day grace period, and the head shall be sent for examination to the public health laboratory, department of health and human services. The expense of destroying the dog, cat or ferret, for disposal of the remains, and for preparing and shipping the head shall be the responsibility of the owner.
(c) The dog, cat, or ferret shall be euthanized if the owner does not comply with the provisions of subparagraph (a) or (b) of this paragraph.
III. (a) In the case of dogs, cats, and ferrets whose vaccination status is unknown and whose owner cannot be located, the provisions of RSA 436:106, I(a) shall apply.
(b) The expense for dogs and cats shall be an expense of the rabies control authority, and such expense shall be paid from fees collected under RSA 466:4 and 466:6. The expense for ferrets shall be the responsibility of the state.

Source. 1985, 72:1. 1990, 17:3. 1992, 250:9. 1993, 275:4. 1995, 202:10; 310:181, eff. Nov. 1, 1995. 2017, 58:1-3, eff. Aug. 1, 2017.