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Posted on 09-16-2016

World Rabies Day

Rabies is a viral disease that is spread through saliva of the affected animal, causing inflammation in the brain of the mammal bitten. For the past 10 years, countries all around the world have observed World Rabies Day to spread awareness and hopefully help prevent this disease in animals.

It is important to remember that any mammal can be affected by rabies.  Most commonly it is found in raccoons, foxes, bats and skunks but about 400-500 cases are reported each year in domestic pets, and only about 2 human cases are reported.

Rabies is a deadly disease and once it is transmitted to an animal, there is no way to cure it. Common symptoms of rabies include: appearing anxious or aggressive, sensitivity to light and seizures. In the final stages, paralysis of the nerves that control the mouth and throat occurs which is commonly why we see animals foaming at the mouth.

The best way to avoid rabies is prevention and awareness. All states have rabies laws and it is important as a pet owner to be aware of these laws. Vaccines are required and quarantines are administered in each state when a pet is bitten by a wild animal or unknown domestic animal. Puppies and kittens should be vaccinated no later than 12 weeks of age and then again after a year, older animals should be vaccinated every three years to keep them safe and protected. If you or your pet is scratched or bitten you should report to a doctor immediately and ask for rabies papers from the other animals owner if appropriate. For more information about specific laws and protocol in Arizona visit the Arizona Department of Health website.

Rabies is a preventable disease and awareness is the number one way to prevent it. Being aware of your surroundings and making sure your pet is prepared and vaccinated is the most responsible thing you can do as an owner. If you have questions or would like to get your pet vaccinated visit our website or call us at (602) 559-5500

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