2004N-0049 - Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposed Collection; Comment Request; Control of Communicable Diseases; Restrictions on African Rodents, Prairie Dogs, and Certain Other Animals
FDA Comment Number : EC68
Submitter : Ms. Delilah Williams Date & Time: 05/03/2004 05:05:28
Organization : NW Phoenix Rising, Inc.
Federal Government
Category :
Issue Areas/Comments
To the point, Please rescind the ban on black tailed prairie dogs, which is a native species, and keep the ban in place on imports coming into this country. If there are no imports coming in from Africa, there would be no need for quarantine and other regulations that are hard to enforce. Consider moving that focus to domestic pet traders and pet stores, to enforce laws of anti-cruelty and inhumane conditions. The argument regarding incubation of the mpv virus in a few prairie dogs unaccounted for, is weak at best. There are many more potentially lethal diseases, than monkeypox. According to the FDA, the virus has caused fatalities in some poor and unsanitary areas in Africa, but in the United States, modern medicine and more sanitary conditions, obviously prevented fatalities, in the relatively few confirmed cases. What has happened to common sense? Has it evolved into such paranoia, that an innocent animal; a threatened and treasured native species, can be dismissed without consideration or compremise? If this ban on prairie dogs is made permanent, the few protections they have in the wild, will be jeopardized, as they have been already, in several areas around the country. So many innocent animals have been, and continue to be, euthanized by pet stores and wholesalers, who have given up hope the ban will be lifted, and cannot afford to feed and house the animals imposed upon them, by the FDA/CDC response to mpv last June. For the scientific community at CDC, to shrug this situation off, simply by saying, "we don't know enough about the latent effect of the virus", is not enough justification to impose a death sentence to these animals, when the risk to human health is so minimal. Stop behaving like Chicken little, afraid the sky is falling! The answer is so simple: Keep the African rodents out of the country, and remove the ban on our native prairie dogs. Thank you.