PA leads the nation in rabies for cats

Pennsylvania’s rabies statistics are now available. During 2011, 450 animals tested positive for rabies in the Commonwealth. Berks County reported four cats, three raccoons, three skunks and one fox with rabies. National rabies statistics for 2010 were reported this fall. Once again, Pennsylvania led the country in the number of rabid cats (56). We came in fifth in the overall number of rabid animals with 394, after Texas (774), Virginia (591), New York (496) and North Carolina (411). We worry about rabies not just because the disease is deadly to our pets, but because it can kill humans. In 2010, two men died of bat rabies in the United States. Since 2001, 29 human cases have been reported in this country. What’s the take-home message? Be sure rabies vaccinations are current for all your pets, including cats that live strictly indoors, and that you have their rabies certificates. If you have any questions about whether your pet is overdue, give us a call at 610-488-0166. – Dr. Lee