From USA Today , an article citing several examples of dogs recently imported into the United States carrying rabies, explains the Center for Disease Control’s concerns about bringing stray dogs into the country and placing them up for adoption.

Importing dogs has been happening for years and has even led to agencies in Southern California to create the Border Puppy Task Force after they saw approximately 10,000 puppies over a span of one year being brought across the border from Mexico.

Rescuing pets from other countries is becoming more and more controversial, with animal advocates arguing that it’s silly and dangerous to go overseas for dogs when there’s plenty of strays already in the United States, but others say it would be difficult to argue against the program if people saw how strays live in countries like Puerto Rico.

Here’s what concerns those in the pet industry:

The only federal requirements for bringing a dog into the USA deal with rabies. An owner must show proof of a rabies vaccination, or sign an agreement stating the dog will be confined until a vaccination is given and goes into effect.

The Department of Agriculture closely monitors dealers who sell to pet stores, whether the dogs are raised or imported from other countries.  Department spokesperson Jessica Milteer says her agency has no authority to monitor people who import large numbers of dogs and sell them on their own. 

The CDC unit responsible for drafting new regulations for dog importation hopes to come up with ways to better screen incoming dogs and have new regulations in place by next year.

You can read the full article here.

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