Rabies Information

Public Act 91-46

Public Act 91-46 requires all dogs and cats 3 months or older to be vaccinated against rabies.

Rabies in Animals

There have been 5000 animals test positive in Connecticut since the rabies virus moved up the East Coast since 1991. Of these, nearly 4,000 have been raccoons and about 1,000 have been skunks. The remaining several hundred cases have been confirmed in:

  • Bobcats
  • Cats
  • Cows
  • Coyotes
  • Deer
  • Dogs
  • Ferrets
  • Foxes
  • Goats
  • Horses
  • Otters
  • Rabbits
  • Sheep
  • Squirrels
  • Woodchucks

This figure does not reflect the actual number of possible rabid animals in the State of Connecticut.

Rabies in Humans

Although rabies is rare among humans, it is almost always fatal. The virus, in the saliva of infected animals, enters a victim through a skin puncture or open wound affecting the central nervous system. It can be fatal to both animals and humans. Post exposure vaccinations are available for humans, but must be given before the onset of symptoms since there is no cure once symptoms appear.

Any person who has been bitten, or whose dog or cat has bitten a person or another animal, is advised to consult the animal control officer, their veterinarian or physician for immediate advice.

Protecting Your Pets

Because rabies is a public health threat, it is important to protect your pets from this virus. Protecting your pets helps to maintain a barrier between humans and possible rabid wildlife.

Rabies Vaccination Clinic

The Town of Hamden conducts an annual low-cost Rabies Vaccination Clinic in conjunction with the Connecticut Veterinary Medical Association (CVMA) usually the first or second week in June. This clinic for dogs and cats has no residency requirements.

The fee is $12 cash only per animal. Licenses have been sold at this clinic as well. Pet owners on public assistance are permitted to have one pet vaccinated at no charge by showing their State Public Assistance Identification Card to the Clinic Coordinator.

Dogs must be leashed, and cats in carriers. Check the newspapers for details.