Sept. 28 is World Rabies Day -- Vaccinate Your Pets, Prevent Rabies

In June a coyote and a coatimundi in southern Gila County were each confirmed as infected with rabies, a deadly disease present in Gila County -- and  one that can kill animals and humans.   So far in 2018 Arizona has had 122 positive cases - along with 18 people and 44 domestic animals exposed to rabid animals.  The rabies virus is a preventable disease that can be spread through bites, scratches, and brain or spinal matter contact. Today is World Rabies Day – proclaimed to raise awareness about the impact of human and animal rabies, how easy it is to prevent it, and how to eliminate the main sources. September 28 was chosen to remember the death of Louis Pastor, who created the first rabies vaccine and laid the foundation of rabies prevention. Today Gila County Animal Care & Control shines a spotlight on the importance of education and awareness to prevent rabies; reminding everyone to vaccinate your dogs, treat bite wounds, and educate kids about dog bite prevention education. Teachers who’d like to invite Gila County Animal Care & Control to speak to grade school students about rabies prevention and animal safety are invited to call John Castaneda and his staff at 928-425-5882.

Five Steps to Avoid Rabies:
1) vaccinate your pets on a regular, annual and repeating schedule
2) don’t touch or approach animals that are stray, sick, injured, or dead
3) If you encounter a pet, domestic animal, livestock or wildlife that you are concerned about, contact Gila County Animal Care & Control, Gila County Sheriff’s Office, or Globe Police Department
4) report loose dogs to Gila County Animal Care & Control
5) Advise kids to always tell an adult if they are bitten or scratched by an animal

There is no cure for rabies once symptoms are present, but the disease is 100% preventable. For more information or questions call: Gila County Animal Care & Control Monday through Friday from 8 A.M. to 5 P.M at 928-425-5882. Connect with staff on facebook