The VCA Everett Animal Hospital on Chelsea Street and the Everett Board of Health held their annual rabies clinic for dogs and cats on Friday evening after hours from 6-7 PM. Approximately fifty people showed up so their pets could receive the vaccine at a discount. The rabies vaccine is a law mandated shot required for dogs and cats and it is the pet owner’s responsibility to make sure their pet’s vaccines are kept up to date. A common misconception many people have is believing if their pet does not go outdoors, the vaccination isn’t necessary, but the truth of the matter is the benefits of the vaccine outweigh the risk of not getting it.
Dr. Shannon Lightbody, one of the veterinarians administering the vaccinations at the clinic, said, “People think if their pet doesn’t go outside they’re at low risk,” which isn’t necessarily true, as animals can escape their homes or even come in contact with wild animals that may be near their property which carry the disease. She added that since the disease can even be transferred to people through their pets, “it is not something to be fooled around with,” and getting your pet vaccinated is the safest bet for pets and their owners.
Pet owners who are aware of the importance either get the vaccine during their animal’s regular routine vet visit or show up at the clinic to keep their pet protected. Brad Spinosa shows up each year with his dog Luna to take advantage of the clinic and get his pup up to date on her shot explaining that it’s great that Everett offers
this clinic to its residents.
Courtney Donahue, who came with her dog, in addition to all four of her cats, provided further insight as to why the vaccine is so important. Although her pets are kept indoors, if any of them ever accidentally got out she could be rest assured they would be protected from wild animals that could be a threat to them. “If they ever got out, they’d be protected from other animals who may be carrying rabies.” Dr. Shannon Lightbody shared that the rabies disease is prominent in wild animals in the area, and each year tests show an increase of it being spread.
While the opportunity to attend the clinic may have passed, pet owners should still be responsible in getting their pets vaccinated during their pet’s annual physical. Not only is it required by law, but it keeps the people and pets in your family protected from the fatal disease.