1Amending the act of December 15, 1986 (P.L.1610, No.181), 
2entitled "An act providing for the establishment and 
3operation of a Statewide system for the prevention and 
4control of rabies; imposing additional powers and duties on 
5the Departments of Agriculture and Health; providing for 
6emergency declarations; fixing penalties for violations; and 
7making an appropriation," further providing for findings, for
8legislative intent, for definitions, for Statewide system for 
9rabies control, for powers and duties of department, for 
10testing, for vaccination required and certificate and tag, 
11for antirabies clinics, for veterinarians participating in 
12low-cost rabies clinics and for powers and duties of 
13department relating to wildlife.

14The General Assembly of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania
15hereby enacts as follows:

16Section 1. Sections 2 and 3 of the act of December 15, 1986 
17(P.L.1610, No.181), known as the Rabies Prevention and Control 
18in Domestic Animals and Wildlife Act, are amended to read:

19Section 2. Findings.

20(a) Incidence of rabies.--[The incidence of rabies
21throughout this Commonwealth has increased over the past six
22years in alarming proportions. In 1985, 450 laboratory-confirmed
23rabies cases were reported in this Commonwealth, as compared to

1only 16 confirmed cases in 1979. Furthermore, the epidemic is
2spreading across the State. In 1981, only nine counties reported
3cases of rabies, whereas, in 1985, rabies cases were reported in
4almost half the counties of this Commonwealth.] Each year 
5several hundred cases of rabies in animals are reported in this 
6Commonwealth. The animals include wild animals, livestock and 
7domestic pets. Human exposure can occur through contact with 
8rabid animals.

9(b) Impact of rabies epidemic.--The socioeconomic impact of
10[the epidemic is frightening. Not only is the postexposure
11treatment costly, but the] rabies in animals and humans is 
12significant. Infection by the rabies virus is almost always 
13fatal. The protocol surrounding a single suspected rabid animal
14requires the expenditure of both monetary and human resources by 
15the department, and the human postexposure prophylaxis is 

17Section 3. Legislative intent.

18It is the intent of the General Assembly to provide a
19comprehensive rabies control program involving [research]
20control, prevention and education [which will protect the
21citizens of this Commonwealth from an unnecessary and harmful
22rabies epidemic].

23Section 2. The definition of "rabies" in section 4 of the
24act is amended and the section is amended by adding definitions
25to read:

26Section 4. Definitions.

27The following words and phrases when used in this act shall
28have the meanings given to them in this section unless the
29context clearly indicates otherwise:

30* * *

1"Certificate of vaccination." A certificate verifying
2vaccination against rabies, containing information consistent
3with the current version of the National Association of State
4Public Health Veterinarians Rabies Compendium.

5* * *

6"Direct veterinary supervision." Occurs when a veterinarian
7is on the premises and has given either oral or written
8instructions to a certified veterinary technician or
9noncertified employee and is easily and quickly available to
10assist the certified veterinary technician or the noncertified

12"Dog Law." The act of December 7, 1982 (P.L.784, No.225),
13known as the Dog Law.

<-14"Permanent identification." As defined in section 102 of the
15act of December 7, 1982 (P.L.784, No.225), known as the Dog Law.

16"Rabies." [In man and animal, hydrophobia, an acute viral
17disease of the central nervous system usually transmitted to man
18through the injection of saliva by an animal bite.] A viral 
19disease affecting the central nervous system of a mammal that is
20transmitted through contact with saliva or other potentially 
21infectious material such as neural tissue from an infected 
22animal, including, but not limited to, a bite, scratch and 
23contact of saliva or other infectious material with broken skin, 
24an eye or mucous membrane.

25"Rabies vaccine." A product used to stimulate an immune
26response to rabies, licensed by the United States Department of
27Agriculture and listed in the current version of the National
28Association of State Public Health Veterinarians Rabies

30* * *

1"Suspected <-of having rabies rabid animal." A mammal
2exhibiting behavior that is suggestive of infection with rabies
3in the opinion of a veterinarian, public health official or
4official representative of the department, the Department of
5Health or the pennsylvania Game Commission.

<-6"Vaccinated against rabies." The status of an animal that:

7(1) has undergone:

8(i) administration by a licensed veterinarian; or

9(ii) direct veterinary supervision of a rabies
10vaccine in accordance with the specifications of the
11vaccine manufacturer; and

12(2) is a member of an animal species for which the
13rabies vaccine has been approved for use and, regarding the
14duration of vaccination immunity as established by the
15vaccine manufacturer, has not expired.

16The term also describes the status of a dog or cat that is
17vaccinated against rabies with a rabies vaccine in accordance
18with the vaccine specifications of the manufacturer by a kennel
19owner or operator certified by the department to administer the
20rabies vaccine provided the dog or cat is kept on the licensed
21kennel premises.

<-22"Vaccinated against rabies." The status of an animal that:

23(1) has undergone administration of unexpired rabies
24vaccine in accordance with the specifications of the vaccine

26(i) by a licensed veterinarian; or

27(ii) under the direct supervision of a licensed
28veterinarian; and

29(2) is a member of an animal species for which the
30rabies vaccine has been approved for use.

1Section 3. Sections 5, 6 and 7 of the act are amended to

3Section 5. Statewide system for rabies control.

4The department, in cooperation with the Pennsylvania Game
5Commission and the Department of Health, shall establish a
6Statewide system for the prevention and control of rabies in
7both wild and domestic animals. The system will encompass [both
8a comprehensive research program aimed at ending the rabies
9epidemic in the wild and] a rabies control program which
10includes standardized procedures to follow in this Commonwealth.

11Section 6. Powers and duties of department.

12The department shall have the following powers and duties:

13(1) Monitor, in cooperation with the Department of
14Health and the Pennsylvania Game Commission, the confirmed
15incidences of rabies in both domestic and wild animals.

16(2) [Determine, based on the number of confirmed cases,
17the number of projected incidences, the probability of human
18contact and the rapidity of the spread of the rabies, where a
19public risk may exist.] Coordinate and cooperate with 
20Federal, State and local health or animal regulatory 
21authorities as necessary to perform its responsibilities 
22under this act. This includes the authority to enter into 
23agreements to facilitate the distribution of rabies vaccine-
24impregnated animal baits to wildlife within this Commonwealth 
25by Federal or local health or animal regulatory authorities, 
26and to otherwise effectively allocate responsibilities, 
27equipment, expertise and manpower in furtherance of the 
28objectives of this act.

29(3) Institute the relevant actions outlined in this act,
30as well as others determined by the department until it is

1determined that the threat of the rabies epidemic no longer

3(4) [Institute an intensive public education campaign on
4rabies through newspapers, radio and television
5announcements.] (Reserved).

6Section 7. Testing.

7All testing [and other necessary or appropriate rabies
8control] conducted upon rabid or suspected rabid animals
9appropriate to protect human life and safety shall be conducted
10[free of charge] at State laboratories or other facilities
11designated by the secretary.

12Section 4. Section 8 of the act, amended July 1, 1987
13(P.L.184, No.23), is amended to read:

14Section 8. Vaccination required; certificate and tag.

15(a) [Requirement.--Every person living in this Commonwealth,
16owning or keeping a dog or cat over three months of age, shall
17cause that dog or cat to be vaccinated against rabies. Rabies
18vaccine shall be administered by a licensed veterinarian or
19under the supervision of a licensed veterinarian. The
20Commonwealth shall recognize the three-year rabies vaccine as
21the vaccine to be used. Those animals vaccinated after one year
22of age shall get booster vaccinations every three years
23thereafter. Those animals vaccinated prior to one year of age
24will be considered protected for only one year and shall receive
25a booster vaccination one year later on the anniversary date of
26the original vaccination and shall be vaccinated every three
27years thereafter.] Vaccination against rabies required.--

28(1) A person owning or keeping a dog or a cat <-that
29spends part of a 24-hour day in a kennel or colony facility
30or in a residence inhabited by a human being in this

1Commonwealth must <-shall have the dog or cat vaccinated
2against rabies within four weeks after the date the dog or
3cat attains 12 weeks of age.

4(2) A person owning or keeping a dog or cat that is
5required to be vaccinated against rabies shall produce either
6proof of vaccination,<- or exemption status under subsection
7(f),<- within 48 hours after a police officer, State dog
8warden, department official or designated municipal animal
9control officer requests the proof. A dog or cat less than 12
10weeks of age may be vaccinated against rabies according to
11vaccine manufacturer instructions if there is a rabies
12vaccine licensed by the United States Department of
13Agriculture and listed in the current version of the National
14Association of State Public Health Veterinarians Rabies
15Compendium that is labeled for use in a dog or cat less than
1612 weeks of age.

<-17(a.1) Revaccination.--Unless otherwise indicated by the

<-18(3) Unless otherwise indicated by the directions of the
19vaccine manufacturer, a booster vaccination must shall be<-
20administered between 12 and 14 months from the date of the
21initial vaccination regardless of the age of the animal at
22initial vaccination. The animal must<- shall then be
23subsequently revaccinated <-on an ongoing basis in accordance
24with the directions of the vaccine manufacturer.

25(b) [Other persons] Limited certificate to vaccinate.--

26(1) [Owners of State-licensed private or breeding
27kennels and operators of State-licensed nonprofit kennels who
28have been examined and certified by the department under this
29subsection may administer rabies vaccine to animals which are
30either owned by the private or breeding kennel or which are

1in the possession of the nonprofit kennel.] <-An owner of a 
2kennel, other than a commercial kennel, that is licensed 
3under the Dog Law or an operator of a nonprofit kennel that 
4is licensed <-A person who holds any of the following types of 
5kennel licenses under the Dog Law may apply to the department 
6for a limited certificate authorizing the person to whom it 
7is issued to vaccinate a dog or cat <-that is owned and kept in 
8the licensed kennel or the possession of the licensed 
9nonprofit kennel. <-within the possession of the licensed 

11(i) Commercial kennel, in compliance with section
12207(i)(7) of the Dog Law.

13(ii) Dealer kennel.

14(iii) Nonprofit kennel.

15(iv) Private kennel.

16(v) Research kennel.

17(2) The department shall develop, implement and
18administer a comprehensive rabies vaccination instruction
19program encompassing a written examination, which, if
20successfully completed, will lead to [departmental
21certification.] issuance of a limited certificate as 
22described in paragraph (1). A person seeking a limited 
23certificate shall provide the department written verification 
24that was issued by a licensed veterinarian and confirms the 
25applicant was provided a demonstration of rabies vaccination 
26procedures by the licensed veterinarian, and the applicant 
27demonstrated competence in administering <-vaccinations against 
28rabies <-the vaccine. The department may assess a fee for the
29program and examination. All fees received and all costs
30incurred shall be deposited in or expended from the Dog

1[Fund] Law Restricted Account. The department shall
2promulgate all rules and regulations necessary to implement
3this subsection.

4(3) [State-licensed kennel owners and operators of
5State-licensed nonprofit kennels who obtain the required
6certification] A person to whom a limited certificate under 
7paragraph (1) is issued shall:

8(i) Purchase and administer [an inactivated] a
9rabies vaccine for vaccination of dogs and cats only from
10a licensed veterinarian or a source approved by the

12(ii) Administer the vaccine in an approved manner so 
13the dog or cat is properly vaccinated against rabies.

14(iii) Maintain detailed records for at least three
15years which indicate:

16(A) The name, type, lot number, date of purchase
17and date of administration of the rabies vaccine.

18(B) A detailed description of the [animal] dog 
19or cat vaccinated. The description must <-shall include 
20the breed, age, color, markings, sex and any 
21permanent identification markers such as a microchip 
22or tattoo.

23(C) The full name, address, certification number 
24and telephone number of the person who administered
25the vaccine.

26(iv) Provide immediate access to the records
27described in subparagraph (iii) upon the request of the

29(c) Certificate and tag of vaccination.--Every licensed
30veterinarian who vaccinates a dog or cat against rabies shall

1issue a [vaccination<-] certificate of vaccination and tag
2[provided by the manufacturer] to the owner. Information
3contained in rabies vaccination records shall not be used for
4the purpose of licensing animals or for taxation of individuals
5for owning animals. For the purposes of this section, each
6licensed veterinarian may select a vaccine of his choice and use
7the procedures for administering it as are consistent with the
8recommendations of the Federal agency which licenses the

10(d) Enforcement.--[It shall be the duty of every] A police
11officer or State dog warden or the designated municipal animal
12control officer [to] shall issue a citation to every person who
13owns a dog or cat which is not either:

14(1) vaccinated <-against rabies pursuant to subsection
15(a)<-, (a.1) or (b); or

16(2) exempt from the vaccination requirement pursuant to 
17subsection (f).

18(e) Animals received by nonprofit kennels.--Notwithstanding
19any provision of this act, a nonprofit kennel is not required to
20vaccinate an animal received by the kennel for a period of ten

22(f) Exemption.--

23(1) An exemption from vaccination against rabies for a
24dog or cat under subsection (a) may be granted if a licensed
25veterinarian examined <-examines the dog or cat and determines
26that it would be medically contraindicated to vaccinate.

27(2) An exemption statement must be completed and signed
28by the veterinarian and dog or cat owner and must contain the
29following information in order to be valid:

30(i) the signature of the veterinarian and the

1veterinarian's license number;

2(ii) the date;

3(iii) the name and address of the veterinary
4practice, office or clinic;

5(iv) an explanation of the medical reason
6contraindicating vaccination <-against rabies; and

7(v) a description of the dog or cat that includes:

8(A) breed;

9(B) sex;

10(C) age;

11(D) color and markings;

12(E) whether the dog or cat is intact, neutered
13or spayed; and

14(F) the current license number of the dog that
15includes any tattoo or microchip <-permanent
16identification, if applicable.

17(vi) The signature of the owner of the dog or cat 
18and the address of the owner. If there is more than one 
19owner, and the owners are living at separate locations 
20where the dog or cat may be housed, the signature and 
21address of both owners is required.

22(3) A rabies vaccination exemption <-An exemption from
23vaccination against rabies is valid for a period of up to one
24calendar year, after which the dog or cat <-must shall be
25reexamined. At the reexamination, the dog or cat <-must shall
26either be vaccinated against rabies or, if exemption status
27still applies, a new certificate of exemption must <-shall be

29(4) The veterinarian shall maintain the signed exemption
30as part of the medical records and provide two copies to the

1owner. The owner of the dog or cat shall maintain one copy of
2the signed exemption for their records and forward one copy
3to the Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture, Office of Dog
4Law Enforcement, 2301 North Cameron Street, Harrisburg, PA

6Section 5. Section 9 of the act is amended to read:

7Section 9. [Antirabies clinics.

8The department shall assist in the establishment of low-cost
9antirabies clinics. These clinics shall be offered at locations
10and on dates as appropriate. The department shall establish
11vaccination procedures for cats and dogs to be used at the
12clinics. In assisting in the establishment of antirabies
13clinics, the department shall cooperate with local veterinarians
14and other local organizations.] (Reserved).

15Section 6. Section 9.1 of the act, added July 1, 1987
16(P.L.184, No.23), is amended to read:

17Section 9.1. [Veterinarians participating in low-cost rabies

19(a) General rule.--Except as otherwise provided in this
20section, no veterinarian or an assistant under the direction of
21the veterinarian shall be liable to any person for civil damages
22as a result of any acts or omissions committed as a participant
23in a low-cost rabies clinic established under section 9, unless
24the conduct of the veterinarian falls below the standards
25generally practiced and accepted in like circumstances by
26veterinarians performing the same or similar acts, and unless it
27is shown that the veterinarian did an act or omitted the doing
28of an act which the veterinarian was under a recognized duty to
29another to do, knowing or having reason to know that the act or
30omission created a risk of actual harm to the person or property

1of another. It shall be insufficient to impose liability to
2establish only that the conduct of the veterinarian fell below
3ordinary standards of care.

4(b) Exception.--Nothing in this section shall be construed
5as affecting or modifying any existing legal basis for
6determining the liability, or any defense thereto, of a
7veterinarian set forth in the act of December 27, 1974 (P.L.995,
8No.326), known as the Veterinary Medicine Practice Act.]

10Section 7. Section 10 of the act is amended to read:

11Section 10. [Powers and duties of department relating to

13(a) Powers and duties.--The department shall develop,
14administer and enter into a contract with Wistar Institute for a
15comprehensive multiyear wildlife vaccine research program, which
16may include, but not be limited to, the following:

17(1) The identification of an appropriate wildlife

19(2) The development of effective bait attractants for
20wildlife in the field.

21(3) Assessment of the duration of the immunity of the
22animal, once vaccinated, as well as the effects of the
23vaccine on wildlife, its safety and stability, and the
24economics of vaccine production.

25(4) The identification and development of a distribution
26system for the dissemination of the bait in rural and urban

28(b) Monitoring and reporting of research activity.--

29(1) Annually, the department in conjunction with the
30Wistar Institute shall provide to the General Assembly a

1status report of the research activity conducted from the
2prior year. The status report shall contain a summary of the
3research and the dollars expended.

4(2) Prior to the distribution of the bait in rural and
5urban environments, a comprehensive report outlining the
6distribution procedure must be submitted to the General
7Assembly for review.

8(c) Commission cooperation.--The Pennsylvania Game
9Commission shall cooperate with the department in carrying out
10the research activities required by this section.] (Reserved).

11Section 8. This act shall take effect in 60 days.