Rabies is a fatal but preventable viral disease. It can spread to people and pets if they are bitten or scratched by a rabid animal. In the United States, rabies is mostly found in wild animals like bats, raccoons, skunks, and foxes. However, in many other countries dogs still carry rabies, and most rabies deaths in people around the world are caused by dog bites.
Skunks and bats are the wild animals that carry rabies in Minnesota. Dogs, cats, horses, cattle, and other domestic animals usually become infected after being bitten by a rabid skunk. People are generally exposed to rabies by bats, dogs, cats or livestock.
Rabies Prevention for our families
Keeping dogs and cats up to date on their rabies vaccination will prevent them from acquiring the disease from wildlife, and thereby prevent possible transmission to your family or other people.
Keep strays and wildlife (especially skunks and bats) away from pets and livestock
Do not approach unfamiliar or wild animals; teach children to do the same
Do not keep wild animals as pets
Never leave children alone with any animal
Report stray animals or animals acting unusual to local animal control
Bat-proof your home
Do not attract wild or stray animals to your home
How do we prevent Rabies in our pets?
Vaccination is very effective in preventing Rabies. It is also very safe. In adulthood, vaccination is recommended every 3 years
For vaccine sensitive dogs, annual blood titers can be done to make sure there are adequate antibody levels for protection (RFIT).
Current vaccination for Rabies is required for all dogs and cats at River Valley Veterinary Service- for boarding, for grooming, for Obedience classes and for Hospitalization