There are recent reports of a concerning uptick in positive Rabies cases in domestic cats and dogs in the Charlottesville, Virginia area. The Blue Ridge Health Department is reporting that many of the cases are occurring in pets that are not vaccinated against rabies, and they are urging all pet owners to take steps to get their pets inoculated against the disease.
We don’t currently have any evidence to suggest that this particular outbreak has spread outside of Virginia, but it is important to stay vigilant no matter your location, as approximately 100 dogs get infected by rabid wildlife every year in the United States on average. Rabies is 100% fatal in pets, which is why prevention is SO important- and the vaccine is widely accessible and available.
In addition to vaccination, officials also recommend that pets should be kept on private property as much as possible and owners should not let them roam free to reduce the possibility of exposure to rabies. Garbage and pet food should not be kept outside, and people should not attempt to keep wild animals as pets. Anyone who sees an animal acting strangely should contact their local animal control department and should also not go near the animal.
While the incidence of rabies tends to be higher in warmer months when pets and people are more active and spend more time outdoors and in social settings, the risk is present year-round, so take precautions and make sure your pet is vaccinated. If your pet is unvaccinated, or behind on their shots, call AMCMA today at (314) 951-1534, or use our mobile app to schedule your appointment.