August is Immunization Awareness Month: Are Your Pets Vaccinations Current?
By Carol Weemes, Animal Services
Posted on August 06, 2020, August 06, 2020

Photo of a cat and a dog

Pet vaccinations are vital for the good health and safety of you, your pet(s), and the community. August is Immunization Awareness month as a notice about this important topic. 

Pet owners are reminded that all dogs and cats are required by state law to be vaccinated against rabies by 4 months of age, and on a 1-year or 3-year basis, thereafter, depending on the type of vaccine used. We also encourage all owners of livestock to consider vaccinating their animals as recommended by a licensed veterinarian.

Arlington has an inviting habitat for wildlife, including animals that are high-risk carriers of rabies, such as bat, coyote, fox, raccoon, and skunk. People and animals may become infected with the rabies virus if an animal that has the disease bites or scratches them. Anyone who is exposed must take a series of post-exposure injections to prevent them from becoming infected with this fatal disease.

Any wild animal that does not show fear of humans or appears sick or sluggish, should not be approached under any circumstances. In 2016, Arlington received two separate reports of bats laying on the ground that appeared to be ill, that were captured by Animal Services officers, and through testing were confirmed to have rabies.

“Bats that are found on the ground may be infected with the rabies virus,” said Ray Rentschler, field operations manager at Animal Services. “If you find a grounded bat, make sure no one touches it, and call Animal Services immediately.”

Bats are not typically active during daylight hours, and it is normal to occasionally spot a red bat roosting, hanging in a tree or on the side of a wall. Click here to learn more about bats and other wildlife in Arlington’s Urban Wildlife website.

As a safety precaution, bats and other wildlife should never be approached under any circumstances, day or night. Wildlife sightings can be exciting, but it is important to respect distances, making sure people and pets do not get near these unique creatures. Having pet(s) vaccinated against rabies protects you, them, and the community.

FETCH by WebMD offers Pet Vaccines: Schedules for Cats and Dogs to help with figuring out the what and when for keeping other vaccinations current.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) stresses the importance of vaccinating your pet here.

Please help us maintain safe and livable neighborhoods by vaccinating your pets.

Texas Coalition for Animal Protection (TCAP) offers low-cost pet vaccinations and microchips at Arlington Animal Services each month. See clinic schedule here.

If you spot wildlife in Arlington, get the Ask Arlington App, and report it here. See maps of wildlife reported in Arlington to see what is commonly spotted in your neighborhood.

If you spot wildlife that appears to be ill or is acting strangely call Animal Services immediately, at 817-459-5898. For after-hours or emergencies, call 911.

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