World Rabies Day is coming up on Monday, September 28th. This day encourages us to stop and think about what we can all do to prevent the spread of rabies, a deadly virus. As dog and cat owners, the most important thing you can do is keep your pet’s rabies vaccine up to date!
Why should you keep your pet’s rabies vaccine current? North Carolina state law requires that all dogs and cats be vaccinated against rabies. This law is to protect both pets and humans. A lapse in vaccine status can have significant consequences if your pet is exposed to an animal suspected or confirmed to have rabies (e.g. outdoor wildlife encounter, bat in the house, etc.). In a situation such as this, the local health director can require that a pet be euthanized or placed in a quarantine for up to 6 months (for more information see the NC Rabies Control Manual).
It is also important to note that if your pet’s rabies vaccine status is current but your pet is exposed to a potentially rabid animal (e.g. fights with something in the middle of the night and is wounded, etc.), you should have your pet’s rabies vaccine boostered within 5 days.
If your dog or cat needs a rabies vaccine, then stop by our clinic on Monday September 28th for our rabies clinic. We will be administering rabies vaccinations from 8 AM to 5 PM for $10 per vaccine. One year and three year vaccines are available; note that a 3 year rabies vaccine requires prior proof of rabies vaccination. Walk-ins are welcome; however if other services are requested then an appointment should be scheduled instead.
Want more information about rabies? Check out these great resources:
- Lawndale Pet Health Library – Rabies in Dogs
- Lawndale Pet Health Library – Rabies in Cats
- Global Alliance for Rabies Control
- Bats and rabies
- Kids and rabies
- NC Rabies Control Manual
Author: Dr. C. Noureddine, DVM, MS