Woman dies from rabies contracted from stray dog she tried to rescue

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A 24-year-old Norwegian woman, Birgitte Kallestad, has died after she contracted rabies from a stray puppy she attempted to save in the Philippines.

A statement by her family, said she was on holiday with friends when they found the puppy on a street. The puppy is believed to have infected her when it bit her after they took it back to its resort.

She fell ill soon after returning to Norway, and died on Monday at the hospital where she worked making it the first rabies-related death in Norway for more than 200 years.

“Our dear Birgitte loved animals. Our fear is that this will happen to others who have a warm heart like her” her family said.

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Norway’s government does not make rabies vaccinations compulsory for citizens travelling to the Philippines, but Ms Kallestad’s family has now called for a change in the law. “If we can achieve this, the death of our sunbeam can save others,” the family said.

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