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May 16, 2016

Oswego County Health Department Holds Rabies Clinic June 1 in West Monroe

WEST MONROE - The Oswego County Health Department will hold its next rabies clinic Wednesday, June 1, at the West Monroe Town highway Garage, 46 County Route 11, West Monroe

"The rabies virus continues to be active across Oswego County. We've already had three animals test positive for rabies this year, in the towns of Albion, Minetto and Scriba," said Jiancheng Huang, Oswego County Public Health Director. "Although the virus can infect any mammal, including dogs, cats, livestock, wildlife, and humans, the vast majority of rabies cases reported each year occur with wild animals such as raccoons, skunks, bats and foxes. Immunizing pets is an effective way to reduce the risk of human exposures to rabies."

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. 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 pet's 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 clinics, but no one will be turned away. Dogs should be leashed and cats and pet ferrets should be in a carrier. Please leave sick pets at home.

Clinics will be held at these locations during the spring, summer and fall:

  • West Monroe: Wednesday, June 1, 6 to 8 p.m., Town Highway Garage, 46 County Rte. 11.

  • Hannibal: Wednesday, July 6, 6 to 8 p.m., Town Highway Garage, 68 Cemetery Drive.

  • Volney: Wednesday, Aug. 3, 6 to 8 p.m., Bristol Hill Landfill maintenance garage, 3125 State Route 3.

  • Parish: Wednesday, Sept. 7, 6 to 8 p.m., County Highway Garage, 24 Dill Pickle Alley.

  • Pulaski: Wednesday, Oct. 5, 6 to 8 p.m., County Highway Garage, 957 Centerville Road.

  • Scriba: Wednesday, Nov. 2, 6 to 8 p.m., County Highway Garage, 31 Schaad Drive.
  • 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:

  • Make sure that dogs, cats and pet ferrets have current rabies vaccines. The rabies vaccination is the most effective way of protecting pets and humans from rabies.

  • Do not feed pets outdoors.

  • Never try to feed a wild animal.

  • Do not approach or touch unfamiliar animals.

  • Avoid any animal with symptoms of rabies.

  • Block any openings into the home that an animal may get through.

  • Keep tamper-proof lids on outside garbage cans so animals are not attracted to your property.

  • Teach children basic rules about protecting themselves from strange and unfamiliar animals.

  • To report a possible exposure, or for more information about rabies, call the Oswego County Health Department weekdays at 349-3564 or 1-800-596-3200, ext. 3564. In an emergency during evenings, weekends, or holidays, call the health department's answering service at 341-0086.

    For more information on rabies visit www.oswegocounty.com/health or www.cdc.gov/rabies.

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