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24 Forest Recreation Areas to Remain Closed to Dogs, Cats, and Other Mammals from August 1st, 2020 to July 31st, 2022

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Positive Rabies Cases Continue to be Detected, Forest Recreation Areas to Remain Closed to Pets
From August 1st, 2020 to July 31st, 2022, visitors are prohibited from bringing dogs, cats, and other mammals to the following 24 locations: the forest recreation areas of Taipingshan, Neidong, Manyueyuan, Dongyanshan, Guanwu, Dasyueshan, Basianshan, Wuling, Hehuanshan, Aowanda, Alishan, Tengjhih, Shuangliu, Kenting, Jhihben, Xiangyang, Fuyuan, Chihnan, Cilan, Mingchi, and Huisun Forest Area; Danongdafu Forest Park, Aogu Wetlands Forest Park, and Lalashan Sacred Tree Reserve. However, in order to allow families with pets to bring along their dogs and cats when traveling, temporary pet waiting zones have been set up in National Forest Recreation Areas for visitors to use. In addition, Linhousilin Forest Park has been set up as a pilot area for the conditional admission of pets, that is: dogs and cats can enter the park if they have been vaccinated for rabies, have proof of rabies vaccination and microchipping, and are properly leashed or placed in a stroller.
Initiating Scientific Research to Assess Feasibility for Conditional Admission
Since the 2013 rabies outbreak among Formosan ferret-badgers in Taiwan, the Forestry Bureau implemented measures to prohibit visitors from bringing dogs and cats in order to prevent the spread of the virus. During the implementation period, many people have offered suggestions that dogs and cats could be allowed conditional admission into the parks. Therefore, a research project was initiated to study and analyze the responsibilities of pet owners, infectious diseases, ecosystem conservation, park management, and pet welfare through questionnaires, in order to scientifically evaluate the feasibility of bringing dogs and cats into parks. According to the research results and based on the principles of ecosystem protection and animal infectious diseases, no rabies-positive cases have been detected in recent years in Pingtung's Linhousilin Forest Park, and the area is not adjacent to ecologically sensitive environments, such as primeval forests. After many discussions with experts and researchers, it was decided that the park will permit conditional admission of pets on a trial basis starting on August 1st, 2020. The other parks will be reviewed on a rolling basis with reference to the monitoring data and the implementation status of Linhousilin Forest Park, and will gradually allow admission of pets.
Rules for Conditional Admission of Pets into Linhousilin Forest Park
The Forestry Bureau will allow conditional admission of pets into Linhousilin Forest Park on a trial basis starting on August 1st, 2020. Guidance will be provided to visitors to prevent confusion about the relevant regulations in the initial stage. In addition to hiring staff or volunteers to assist in holding up signs and providing information, pet leashes will be available at the park's Visitor Center if needed (use identity document to borrow). Visitors are asked to follow the rules below:
1.     Please bring a valid "Rabies Vaccination" and "Microchipping" certificate when entering the park.
2.     Dogs and cats inside the park must be placed in a bag, carrier, stroller, or be on a proper leash.
3.     Please clean up pet excrement as you go.
4.     Do not feed stray animals.
Support the Prevention of Animal Diseases
The Forestry Bureau pointed out that according to the rabies surveillance results released by the Bureau of Animal and Plant Health Inspection and Quarantine, Council of Agriculture, Executive Yuan, in June 2020, the percentage of rabies-positive test results for ferret-badgers was still 24%, and as of June 2020, there have been four cases of rabies-infected ferret-badgers actively attacking and biting people. Visitors are urged not to bring dogs or cats to the National Forest Recreation Areas and to not touch or feed wild animals when visiting the National Forest Recreation Areas. Furthermore, immediately report any animal suspected of being infected with rabies to the animal disease prevention authorities or Forest District Offices to ensure the safety of pets, owners, and visitors. We ask for the support and understanding of the public in the prevention of diseases.
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Visit counts:59 Last updated on:2020-09-28