Skip to content

Healthy Pets

Font Size

Topic Overview

Cats, dogs, and ferrets

Cats, dogs, and ferrets should receive their first rabies vaccination at the age of 3 months and their second vaccination at the age of 1 year. After the second vaccination, the need for revaccination of cats and dogs is determined by the type of vaccine used, by the number of rabies cases in your local area, and state laws.

  • Yearly vaccination may be needed in areas with a high incidence of rabies.
  • Vaccination every 3 years may be needed in areas with a low incidence of rabies.
  • Ferrets should be vaccinated every year.

Check with your veterinarian for the rabies vaccination schedule in your area.

Recommended Related to Pets

Top 10 Winter Skin and Paw Care Tips

Exposure to winter’s dry, cold air and chilly rain, sleet and snow can cause chapped paws and itchy, flaking skin, but these aren’t the only discomforts pets can suffer. Winter walks can become downright dangerous if chemicals from ice-melting agents are licked off of bare paws. Says Dr. Louise Murray, ASPCA Director of Medicine, “During the winter, products used as de-icers on sidewalks and other areas can lead to trouble for our animal companions, potentially causing problems ranging from...

Read the Top 10 Winter Skin and Paw Care Tips article > >

Exotic pets

If you have an exotic pet, check with your vet to find out what vaccinations the pet needs. Most common exotic animal bites come from:

  • Skunks and raccoons. Wild (endemic) populations of skunks and raccoons have the greatest risk for having rabies.
  • Ferrets. These animals can transmit rabies.
  • Monkeys.

If you have questions about local rabies issues, contact your local health department. If you will be traveling with your pet, check with your vet about the protection your animal needs and the risk your animal has for getting rabies.

WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise

Last Updated: August 27, 2012
This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information.

Today on WebMD

Puppy digging hole
Are you putting your pet at risk?
Cat looking at fish
Things we can learn from our pets.
 
dog and kitten
27 ways pets help your health.
tick
Get the facts about prevention.
 
Woman holding puppy
Article
Sad dog and guacamole
Slideshow
 
Siamese cat eating from bowl
Slideshow
cat on couch
Evaluator
 

Love your pets, hate your allergies?

Get tips for relief.

Loading ...

Sending your email...

This feature is temporarily unavailable. Please try again later.

Thanks!

Now check your email account on your mobile phone to download your new app.

Cat People vs Dog People Slideshow
Slideshow
Kitten playing
Quiz
 
Orange cat nuzzling woman
Slideshow
German shephard reading a book
Quiz