March 16, 2017
SCRIBA - Oswego County residents can have their pets immunized against rabies Wednesday, March 22 at the Oswego County Highway Garage, 31 Schaad Drive, Scriba. The clinic will be conducted by the Oswego County Health Department from 6 to 8 p.m.
New York State law requires that all cats, dogs, and ferrets be vaccinated against rabies. The first rabies vaccine should be given at three months of age. Ferrets must be vaccinated annually. Dogs and cats require a second vaccination within one year of the first, and every three years thereafter.
Oswego County Public Health Director Jiancheng Huang said the rabies virus remains active throughout the year and can infect all mammals including humans. The virus is fatal to mammals.
"Most of our rabies cases involve people or domestic animals coming in contact with rabid wildlife such as raccoons, skunks, bats and foxes," said Huang. "Immunizing pets greatly reduces the risk of human exposure to rabies and is the most effective way to protect humans and their pets from the disease."
In order for pets to receive the 3-year booster shot, owners need to show that the pet was previously vaccinated. Owners should bring their petís last rabies vaccination certificate with them to the clinic.
The health department suggests a $7 donation per animal to help cover the cost of the rabies clinic, but no one will be turned away. Dogs should be leashed and cats and ferrets should be in a carrier. Please leave sick pets at home.
Any time a person or pet comes in contact with a sick or suspicious-acting animal, the incident should be reported to the county health department as soon as possible. A bite or scratch on the skin should be washed immediately with soap and water.
To reduce the risk of rabies in animals and humans, people should take the following steps:
To report a possible exposure, or for more information about rabies, call the Oswego County Health Department weekdays at 315-349-3564. In an emergency during evenings, weekends, or holidays, call the health departmentís answering service at 315-341-0086.
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