Sunday, 19 March 2023 18:12

Oswego County Offers First Rabies Vaccination Clinic of 2023

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The Oswego County Health Department holds its first rabies clinic of year on Wednesday, March 29.

The clinic will be open by appointment only from 6 to 8 p.m. at the Oswego County Highway Garage, 31 Schaad Dr., Oswego.

Beginning Wednesday, March 22, residents can call 315-349-3564 to make an appointment for the March 29 clinic. Throughout the year, appointments will be scheduled clinic-by-clinic and an announcement for the opening of the appointment phone line will be made before each clinic.

The appointment phone line will be open weekdays between 9 a.m. and 4 p.m. until all appointments are filled. Please do not call the after-hours answering service to schedule an appointment for the rabies clinic.

Those who are unable to keep their appointment are asked to call back and cancel it, so that others may have the opportunity to schedule one of the limited appointments.

There is a suggested donation of $7 per pet.

The following protocols will be in effect at all clinics:

  • Do not attend the clinic if you or your pet are ill.
  • There is a limit of four pets per family. Only the individuals handling the animals should attend the clinic. Young children are not recommended to enter the building unless absolutely necessary. If children are left in the car, they should be properly supervised.
  • People must control their pets at all times. Pets must be caged and/or leashed with a fixed length no longer than six feet. Cats and ferrets should be in a carrier.
  • Attendees are asked to arrive no more than 10 minutes early to their appointment and follow signs and instructions from clinic staff.

New York State Public Health Law requires that all dogs, cats, and ferrets be vaccinated against rabies, with the first vaccine given at three months of age. Dogs and cats require a second vaccination within one year of the first, and every three years thereafter. Ferrets must be vaccinated annually. Animals under three months of age cannot receive a rabies vaccination.

“Any mammal can be infected with rabies, which is why it is essential to immunize pets for the most effective protection against this fatal disease.” said Oswego County Director of Environmental Health Katelyn Parkhurst. “Unvaccinated pets can increase the risk of spreading this virus to people.”

All animal bites, whether from a domestic animal or wildlife, should be reported to the Oswego County Health Department as soon as possible. Health Department staff will work with residents and health care providers to determine if rabies treatment is needed.

To report an animal bite or seek guidance concerning potential exposures to rabies, call the Oswego County Health Department at 315-349-3557, weekdays from 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m.; or at 315-341-0086 after regular business hours, weekends and holidays. Please do not call the after-hours number to make a rabies vaccination appointment. Use it only for incidents involving potential exposure.

Additional information about rabies can be found at https://health.oswegocounty.com/programs/environmental1/rabies_program2.php and www.cdc.gov/rabies.

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