Two dogs have tested positive for rabies in Colorado, the first cases in the state since 2003. With this news, Foothills Animal Shelter is strongly encouraging all pet owners to make sure their animals are up-to-date on their rabies vaccinations.
Rabies is caused by a virus that affects the nervous system of humans and other mammals, and is almost always fatal. When rabies is present in wildlife, the risk of transmission to humans and domestic animals increases dramatically. Wild animals infected with the virus can spread it through bites and scratches. The first confirmed case of terrestrial rabies in Jefferson County was reported in April 2016, and since then dozens of wild animals have tested positive.
Pet owners should speak with their veterinarian about getting a rabies vaccine and keeping it updated. As another option, Foothills Animal Shelter offers rabies vaccinations at weekly Vaccine, License & Microchip Clinics.
- What: Affordable Vaccine, License, & Microchip Clinics
- When: Every Friday from 4 – 5:30 pm and the first Saturday of every month from 9 – 10:30 am
- Where: Foothills Animal Shelter (580 McIntyre Street in Golden)
- Cost: $15 for rabies vaccination, $20 for all other vaccines
- Note: No appointment necessary. If applicable, please bring your pet’s past written vaccine records to help us better serve you.
- Click here for more info and full schedule
Other tips for pet owners to prevent possible exposure to rabies:
- Avoid contact with wild animals. Make sure your dog is on leash at all times to avoid the possibility of contact with wildlife.
- Keep your cats indoors to decrease the chance of contact with wild animals.
- Do not intentionally feed wild animals or leave your pet’s food outside.
- If you believe your pet has been bitten or scratched by a wild animal, contact your veterinarian immediately.
Check out this video from Jeffco Public Health for more information on the recent spike in rabies cases:
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