Cats and Rabies
Cats and Rabies
This information is useful if you live in a country where Rabies exists and is not a one off occurance.
Rabies is a viral medical condition that affects a cat’s brain function and other parts of his body. Cats generally get rabies from an animal that already has this illness and one of the best ways to prevent rabies is by giving your cat a vaccine so that his immune system will be protected from rabies. One way to tell if your cat has rabies is if there is a change in his mood. For example, if your cat used to be mild-tempered but now has become irritated and fussy, he could have rabies. Another sign of rabies is if your cat drools more than normal and this is because his nervous system is affected by rabies and as a result he experiences problems in his salivary glands. Paralysis is another symptom of rabies in cats.
How Can I Keep My Cat From Getting Rabies?
If you live in a rural area near wildlife, you need to keep the cat away from wild animals since this increases their chances of getting rabies. You should also not leave the cat outside unattended for long periods of time and if your cat is fighting with another cat, you do not want to separate them because the cat could get scratched and contract rabies. Also bathe your cat occasionally although most cats clean themselves by licking.
Places That Offer Rabies Vaccinations
Your veterinarian may offer the rabies vaccination but there are other places you can get the rabies vaccine for your cat. Some local fire stations offer rabies shots for free and animal shelters also have rabies shots for residents. Community centers and free clinics are good places for the cat to receive a vaccine and a few nonprofit animal rights organizations may offer the vaccine.
How Often Should My Cat Be Vaccinated?
Every state has laws regarding how often your cat should be vaccinated and you can ask the veterinarian this question. Generally cats need to be vaccinated at 26 weeks old and after this the cat should be vaccinated once a year. Some states require you to have the cat vaccinated every three years after he receives his initial rabies shots.
Beware of Taking in Stray Cats
Because it is possible that some stray cats in your neighborhood may have rabies and other medical issues, you want to avoid taking them in your home, particularly if you have a cat or dog in the home. It is better to focus on the pets you have already and that will reduce your risk of giving your pets rabies or catching rabies yourself.
Rabies is a fatal disease in cats but it is also fatal in humans because humans can contract rabies through cat bites. For this reason you should get the rabies vaccine yourself so that you can be protected against the illness. If your cat has rabies, you need to isolate him from other pets and others in the home until he recovers so that they will not be exposed to it. Look out for any abnormal signs in your cat’s behavior and eating habits so you can mention it to the veterinarian when he examines the cat.