OSWEGO — The Oswego County Health Department will hold its next rabies clinic from 6 to 8 p.m. on Wednesday, Aug. 11 at the Bristol Hill Landfill Solid Waste Facility at 3125 Route 3 in Fulton.
Starting on Thursday, Aug. 5, residents can call 315-349-3557 to schedule an appointment. The phone line for appointments 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.
The Oswego County Health Department reminds residents that making an appointment for a pet is one of the COVID-19 protocols that remains in place for all rabies clinics.
Judy Grandy, director of Environmental Health for the Oswego County Health Department added, “If you have an appointment, please make it a priority to show up. If you cannot make it to your appointment, please call the office and cancel. Unfortunately, once our schedule is full, we must turn people away. With the emphasis on making appointments, the significant number of no-shows at our recent clinics denies other people the opportunity to get their pets vaccinated.”
There will be limitations for both pets and people. No more than four pets per family and no more than two adults, or an adult and a child aged 14 and older, per car. Younger children will not be allowed into the building. Parents must make sure that they are properly supervised in their car.
Pets must be caged and/or leashed with a fixed length no longer than six feet. Cats and ferrets should be in a carrier. People must maintain control of their pets. Veterinary staff will not be able to leave their stations to deliver shots to a pet in the vehicle.
The health department suggests a $7 donation per animal to help defray the clinic cost.
Grandy said, “The rabies virus can infect any mammal and is nearly always fatal if left untreated. It even remains active during the winter months. Immunizing pets is the most effective protection from the disease.”
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.
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 315-341-0086 after regular business hours, weekends and holidays. Do not call this number after hours to schedule an appointment for a rabies clinic.
Additional information about rabies can be found at https://health.oswegocounty.com/programs/environmental1/rabies_program2.php and www.cdc.gov/rabies.