January 26, 2011

NM Vet Association Blocks Rabies Medical Exemption

In order to get a rabies medical exemption bill filed this session, New Mexico legislators must hear from the public in force. A hand full of veterinarians stand in the way. 

Despite a survey of its members heavily in favor of rabies medical exemption for sick and senior pets, the New Mexico Veterinary Association Board has voted to oppose any such legislation. Only a strong push by New Mexico dog and cat lovers will override this objection.

Yes, you read that right. Although survey results show that the majority (55%) of New Mexico's veterinarians favor rabies medical waivers, the New Mexico Veterinary Medical Association's Board voted to oppose any such legislation that may be filed (see letter below from The Rabies Challenge Fund).

If your pet suffers from lymphoma, auto-immune hemolytic anemia, metasticized cancer, grand-mal seizures or is undergoing chemotherapy, they are required under the law to have a rabies booster despite their medical condition, and the NMVMA's Board voted to maintain the status quo refusing such critically ill animals waivers. You may want to call your veterinarian's office to find out if they voted for or against rabies waivers.

Please find your legislators' contact information here http://www.nmlegis.gov/lcs/legislatorsearch.aspx and ask them to file a rabies medical exemption bill on your behalf and ask all the pet owners in New Mexico you know to do the same.

If you wish to express your concern to the Executive Director of the NMVMA and ask the Board to reverse its decision to oppose rabies exemption legislation, contact Tamara Spooner at (505) 867-6373 byrdspoon@aol.com. You can also contact the two New Mexico State veterinarians and tell them to support rabies exemption legislation. Their contact information is

Dr. Paul Ettestad (505) 827-0006 Paul.Ettestad@state.nm.us and Dr. Dave Fly Dave.Fly@state.nm.us (505) 841-6163.

The time to act on your pet's behalf is now.


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