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Pet Talk Tuesday – Getting your pet vaccinated for rabies

Posted at 4:53 PM, Sep 28, 2021
and last updated 2021-09-28 16:53:57-04

Rabies is a very serious disease. It is a disease that is fatal to people and animals if your pet is not protected by vaccination. You want to make sure your pet is vaccinated to protect them incase they are exposed to the virus. Dr. Jennifer Stachnik says we do vaccinate your cats, dogs, ferrets and that vaccination needs to start when they are four month of age or younger and then they are revaccinated periodically throughout life to make sure they are fully protected. She says if our companion animals ever encounters a potentially rabid animal like a racoon, bat or fox then they should be revaccinated to make sure their protection is up to date and also any humans who do encounter bats, foxes or raccoons or other wildlife that especially are acting strangely or have broken skin with a bite or scratch, or a domestic animal that has a known history of a current rabies vaccine definitely need to make sure they contact the health department and seek medical attention. Wash any wounds very thoroughly immediately to make sure they get care for rabies before it would spread. Dr. Stachnik say the way rabies is spread is through a bite or scratch. The saliva of the infected animal, and then that virus travels f rom the site of the bite, say on the hand up to the brain and that’s where it would be fatal. She says so it does give some time to get the post exposure treatment to make sure that people would be safe and for animals we want to keep them up to date on their vaccines as well because if they are not up to date and they do bite or scratch or someone then they can face very long quarantine to observe them and they can be difficult and expensive or in some cases euthanasia may be recommended so it is best to not take any chances when it comes to rabies and make sure our pets are vaccinated. Also make sure any potential contact with unknown animals or with wildlife, that it does get reported to the health department right away.

Click here to go to the Niagara Frontier Veterinary Society.