Rabies alert over smuggled pets

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Pet lovers are being warned of the dangers of buying illegally imported animals which may have been smuggled into the UK.

East Riding Council’s animal health team says dogs and cats are the main risk of importing rabies, and could land the unsuspecting buyer with a huge bill running into thousands of pounds. Although the UK is rabies-free, the disease is still endemic in Europe, Asia and Africa.

It comes after a local veterinary practice contacted the council regarding a puppy which they were concerned didn’t comply with UK rabies controls. The puppy ended up in quarintine with the owner footing the bill.