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Posted on 03-16-2016

There have been rabid fox and rabid raccoon in the area recently, so now is a good time to take a refresher course on the rabies virus.  It is extremely important (and the law!) to make sure your dogs and cats are up to date on this vaccine at all times!

Rabies is caused by a virus that is transmitted through direct contact with infected saliva. You don’t have to be bitten to contract the virus. Contact with the saliva of an infected animal alone can result in virus contraction. Rabies is basically untreatable if the infection has occurred, and is almost always fatal.  If you or your pet is exposed to wildlife, immediate action can be taken to ensure everyone’s safety. Once again prevention is always the best medicine!

The most common wildlife to be concerned with are raccoons, foxes, bats, and skunks.  That being said, many other species can be infected so if you have any concerns, call Chatham Animal Hospital!.
Signs of a rabies infected animal are abnormal behavior such as nocturnal animals coming out during the day, wildlife approaching you instead of running away, “drunk” appearance. Some animals show very few signs at all.  So always be cautious with wildlife!

Rabies is prevented by vaccination and avoiding wildlife exposure. We have both feline and canine specific vaccines to maximize safety and effectiveness.

If your pet’s rabies vaccine is coming due (or overdue) call Dr. Krakowski, Dr. Bailey, or Dr. Craddock to get back up to date!  As always, don’t hesitate to call with questions or concerns about wildlife exposure.

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