DHEC Encourages Pet Owners to Protect Furry Friends Low-Cost Rabies Vaccination Clinics Available this Spring

In March and April, the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control (DHEC) is urging pet owners to take advantage of free or inexpensive rabies vaccination clinics. This is a component of DHEC’s yearly spring campaign to raise awareness of rabies and pet health. To increase the availability of rabies vaccinations, the department collaborates with veterinary partners. The DHEC-funded low-cost clinics are meant to draw attention to how crucial rabies prevention is. A severe virus that is prevalent in wildlife, rabies can be fatal to humans if it is not treated promptly.

Director of DHEC’s Rabies Program Terri McCollister emphasized the importance of up-to-date rabies vaccinations for livestock and pets. This, according to her, is a crucial step in preventing the sickness in families, pets, and cattle. To spread awareness of rabies, the DHEC is collaborating with veterinary partners.

78 instances of rabies in animals, including raccoons, skunks, bats, foxes, cats, a coyote, and a goat, were reported in South Carolina in 2023. Every year, the state usually encounters 148 rabid animals. Although rabies-related fatalities in humans have declined over time as a result of immunizations and increased awareness, deaths are still possible. There were five human rabies deaths in 2021, but no deaths from the disease were reported by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in 2023.

McCollister commended the veterinarians who manage the low-cost clinics and underlined the importance of rabies education. According to South Carolina law, all pets, including dogs, cats, and ferrets, must have a rabies vaccination. Although not required, immunization of cattle is strongly advised.

McCollister expressed gratitude to all veterinary clinics, shelters, and rescues that offer free or inexpensive clinics every spring and a low-cost option for getting vaccinated against rabies all year long. She encouraged others to organize activities of a similar nature and to provide their local DHEC rabies program with the information so that it can be promoted on social media and in press releases.

By Caleb Anderson

Caleb, a seasoned journalist with a passion for storytelling, has dedicated his career to bringing the latest news to the public. With a keen eye for detail and a commitment to unbiased reporting, He navigates the dynamic world of journalism, covering a wide range of topics from local events to global issues. Caleb's insightful articles reflect his dedication to keeping readers informed and engaged in the ever-evolving landscape of news.

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