Rabies, Pets, and Public Health


Does your pet need his or rabies vaccine updated? Then join us tomorrow (September 28th) for our annual rabies vaccination clinic in honor of World Rabies Day! Lawndale Veterinary Hospital encourages all pet owners to make sure their dogs and cats are up-to-date on the rabies vaccinations at all times.

Here’s why:

  1. It’s the law. North Carolina requires that all dogs and cats maintain a current rabies vaccine. Puppies and kittens should be vaccinated between 12 and 16 weeks of age.
  2. Rabies is a viral disease that travels to the brain.
  3. Symptoms of rabies can include agitation, drooling, aggressive and violent behaviors, neurological signs, confusion, seizures, paralysis, and respiratory failure.
  4. There is no cure for rabies.
  5. Rabies is almost always fatal.
  6. Rabies is in North Carolina. In 2016, 251 animals tested positive for rabies in North Carolina (1):
    • Bat (26)
    • Beaver (2)
    • Cat (10)
    • Cow (4)
    • Deer (1)
    • Dog (2)
    • Fox (51)
    • Raccoon (117)
    • Skunk (38)

  7. Rabies is in Guilford County. In 2016, 15 animals tested positive for rabies in Guilford County (1):

    • Bat (2)
    • Fox (3)
    • Raccoon (7)
    • Skunk (3)
  8. Rabies is a zoonotic disease, which means it can be transmitted between animals and humans.
  9. Between the years of 1929 and 2016, there have been 26 reported cases of human rabies in North Carolina. The most recent case was in 2011 (2).
  10. If your pet does not have a current rabies vaccine and he or she has an encounter with wildlife, then your pet will either have to experience a lengthy quarantine period, or possibly even euthanasia.

Lawndale Veterinary Hospital is making it quick, easy, and cost effective for you to update your pet’s rabies vaccine! Join us tomorrow for our annual rabies vaccination clinic from 8 AM to 5 PM. Vaccines are only $12, and no appointment is necessary. Please note that if your pet does have other concerns that need to be addressed, we do still ask that you schedule an appointment time.


  1. Animal Rabies Cases in North Carolina: 2016. North Carolina Veterinary Public Health State Laboratory of Public Health, accessed September 27, 2017 (http://epi.publichealth.nc.gov/cd/rabies/figures/2016_rabies_cases.pdf)
  2. Human Rabies Reported Cases North Carolina, 1929-2016. North Carolina Department of Health and Human Resources. Reported Communicable Diseases. Accessed September 27, 2017 (http://epi.publichealth.nc.gov/cd/rabies/figures/human_rabies_reported_cases.pdf)

Author: Dr. C. Noureddine, DVM, MS, MS

Photo credit: www.pixabay.com