So, removing most of the passion, let’s talk about this important issue and see what the experts have to say. Bats can enter homes or apartments through small cracks. Although some believe these small animals might have some resistance to the disease, other experts feel that these small animals are more apt to be killed by rabid predators rather than just being bitten and then developing the disease. It is very important that ALL cats be vaccinated against rabies, including cats that never go outdoors. The FVRCP vaccine has been shown to confer immunity for at least three years, so vaccinating your cats with this vaccine any more frequently is probably unnecessary. Other commonly found wildlife carriers include coyotes, wolves, bears, weasels, and groundhogs. Far fewer cat owners said that the vaccination was still needed; that cats could still be exposed to rabies. Plus, the CDC adds, “Titers (which measure antibodies in the blood) do not directly correlate with protection because other immunologic factors also play a role in preventing rabies.”. If you have an outdoor only or an indoor/outdoor cat, then they will need shots as well. We've heard stories about rabid raccoons breaking through screens and coming indoors, and it's quite common for bats, which have a high incidence of rabies, to find their way indoors. No, say many experts. A surprising (to me) number of cat owners argued that since their cats lived inside and were never allowed outside, a rabies vaccination wasn’t needed. Even though you are greatly reducing the risk of rabies by keeping your cat safely indoors, he … In many parts of the world, including parts of Asia and Africa, dogs are the most common source of rabies while in the US, because of legal requirements for vaccinations for dogs, the disease has been reduced significantly in dogs. Some animals are generally not found to have rabies, including rabbits, mice, rats, squirrels, and other small rodents. The anti-vaccination folks then brought up the dangers of allergic reactions to the vaccinations. Kittens are generally vaccinated once around 4 months of age or within their first year of life. Q: My vet tells me that my indoor-only cat, Izzy, needs to be vaccinated for rabies. One is dying from cancer, I will not take him for the shot. Other vaccines are given on a case-by-case basis. A common misconception is that indoor cats are not required to maintain updated vaccines as they do not have exposure to the outdoors or other animals.. The argument went back and forth with considerable passion on both sides. Rabid bats especially, but even skunks and raccoons, have entered homes and when they do, people and pets can be exposed to the virus. In this blog post, I hope to remind all of my readers (and clients) on the importance of vaccination. Here are half-dozen good reasons your veterinarian wants you to keep your cat up-to-date on her vaccinations. The risks of skipping rabies vaccinations are just too great! These are the required or recommended vaccines for indoor cats. Then, too, rabid animals act irrationally and it’s not unusual for a wild animal who lives near people (in rural areas, suburbs, or even in the city) and who normally ignores or avoids people, to enter peoples’ home. Rabies vaccination is an important and required vaccine for all cats. However, even indoor cats … These penalties may seem overly severe, but remember that once the signs appear, there is no effective treatment for rabies. Some of the wild animals the cats were exposed to were known and included bats, skunks, and raccoons. They’ll need the feline distemper vaccine and rabies. The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) states, “All dogs, cats, and ferrets should be vaccinated and revaccinated for rabies according to product label directions.” Period. Although these are the most common carriers, that doesn’t mean these are the only animals found with rabies, however; most mammals can contract the disease. In California, skunks and bats can carry the disease. In one case, sadly, he was referring to my own cat. There are no exceptions made for animals who live inside. Rabies is most commonly transmitted by a bite from an infected animal. But, how often do cats need rabies shots? Increased vaccinations for domestic animals, including and most significantly for dogs and cats, has reduced rabies incidences in the US significantly. Although you referred to these vaccines as yearly, some of these vaccines are not necessarily required annually. We're a company of pet lovers with a commitment to quality & making the tastiest product out there. Lastly, vaccinating your cat, indoor or outside, may be required by law. Are indoor-only cats at risk for Rabies? The vaccination status of these cats was also spotty. It is important that cats, regardless of being indoors or outdoors, be given the rabies vaccine. Most importantly, rabies is a fatal disease for people or any animal unlucky enough to be exposed through a bite or scratch to the saliva of a rabid animal, so extra precautions must be taken to protect us all. For information as to what the laws in your state require, do a search online, talk to your veterinarian or to your local animal control. Because rabies can be transmitted to humans and is nearly universally fatal, many communities have laws mandating rabies vaccination of pets. Your paws may vary By: Karen Nelson El Segundo, CA Replied on 04/19/2011. A: The simplest answer is that rabies vaccines are required by law for all cats and dogs over the age of six months in New York state - … If the cat is not at risk, many veterinarians do not recommend the feline leukemia virus vaccination. Let’s talk about it. Bite wounds treated by a physician are typically reported to the health department, which may then request proof of rabies vaccination. Do indoor cats need shots. However, the most successful program to reduce the impact of the this killer virus is that of vaccinations. While it's unlikely that you're cat will get any of these diseases being indoor only there's always the possibility that something unexpected could happen. Increased vaccinations for domestic animals, including and most significantly for dogs and cats, has reduced rabies incidences in the US significantly. Pet Tips - Indoor Cat Vaccinations. Liz Palika is a Certified Dog Trainer and Certified Animal Behavior Consultant as well as the founder and co-owner of Kindred Spirits Dog Training in northern San Diego county. Last update: Nov 21, 2020 1 answer. Suggested Articles Feline Vaccines: Benefits and Risks Q: My vet tells me that my indoor … Your indoor cat is at a very low risk of contracting rabies but your local jurisdiction may require a current rabies vaccine certification. A: The simplest answer is that rabies vaccines are required by law for all cats and dogs over the age of six months in New York state - and many other states have similar requirements. There's also always the chance, however small, that an indoor-only cat might sneak outdoors through an open window or door. If your cat is strictly an indoor cat, does he need to be vaccinated each year for distemper, and rabies? Supporting Cat Health with Information and Health Studies. Any person with feral cats on his premises shall make a reasonable effort to capture or vaccinate the cats. For … Indoor cats are not at risk of contracting FeLV. Most house cats get out at least once. The vaccination status of the other cats was unknown. It's just whole foods with a dash of love. A surprising (to me) number of cat owners argued that since their cats lived inside and were never allowed outside, a rabies vaccination wasn’t needed. While there is an expensive preventative series of shots that humans can receive to prevent disease after exposure to a rabid animal, no similar preventative protection exists for unvaccinated animals. Benefits of Pets in the Workplace: Interview with a Dog Behavior Expert, What is Parvovirus? Do indoor cats need rabies shots? We live in an apartment in New York City and Izzy is never outside, so why does she need a rabies vaccine? 4. The veterinarian who vaccinates a dog, cat, or ferret shall issue to the owner a vaccination certificate. Even if they never leave the house, indoor cats still need to be vaccinated to protect their health. In each state, there are different vaccine-related laws. Indoor cats DO still need their vaccines. Hopefully, your cat will not bite anyone but if he does, you have proof he had his rabies shot and this can prevent problems. But that's probably not a very satisfying answer. If you see an RV on the road named "Travelin' Dogs", honk and say hi! Healthy indoor cats can potentially wait 3 years between boosters due to a lower-risk lifestyle. I'll share what I've learned from my friends at the Feline Health Center. Even though we may be calm and loving at home, many cats (not me!) The details of the vaccinations varies from state to state and often refers to the label of the specific vaccine used. Do indoor cats need rabies shots every year? A yearly booster of core vaccines protects a cat against rabies, herpesvirus, calicivirus, and panleukopenia. Even an initial rabies vaccination, whether during kittenhood or prior to adoption in older cats, is a better guarantor than none at all. Any bites are required to be reported to the health unit. Companion Animal Hospital in Ithaca, NY for cats, dogs, exotics, and wildlife, Equine and Nemo Farm Animal Hospitals in Ithaca, NY for horses and farm animals, Cornell Ruffian Equine Specialists, on Long Island for every horse, Ambulatory and Production Medicine for service on farms within 30 miles of Ithaca, NY, Animal Health Diagnostic Center New York State Veterinary Diagnostic Laboratory, Cornell University College of Veterinary Medicine Ithaca, New York 14853-6401.
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