Foxes at city zoo won't be put downDoctor says boy to get rabies shots after bite on finger
It looks like Potter Park Zoo's arctic foxes - facing a death threat because one of them bit a 10-year-old boy who climbed into their enclosure - will be spared.
At issue was whether the boy's family would allow him to undergo a series of shots to make sure he had not contracted the rabies virus.
"My understanding is that the family is going to proceed" with the series of shots, said Dr. Dean Sieko, medical director of the Ingham County Health Department.
If the child does go through with the shots, "there would be no reason to euthanize the foxes," he said.
He said it was his understanding that the boy was with a health-care provider late Friday. The 10-year-old climbed over the barrier to the foxes' enclosure last Saturday and was bitten on the finger.
Zoo Director Gerry Brady said he was glad to hear that news and said the zoo would support the boy and his family in any way possible.
Like all zoo animals, the three foxes had been vaccinated against a variety of diseases. But the rabies vaccine, developed for use in dogs, is not specifically licensed for use in foxes, Sienko said.
If the boy and his family had chosen for him not to undergo the series of rabies shots, the foxes would have been euthanized for necropsy, the only way to definitively detect rabies.
Brady said he believes the animals are healthy, but they will be quarantined for 60 days before being returned to their enclosure.
Well, I must say that I am feeling a bit better about this whole situation. But I still hold a grievance with the mother for even thinking of putting the lives of these beautiful creatures in jeopardy!
I hope everyone involved in this matter can move forward and see things in a different light.