Rabies clinics offered around the county
By DONNIE CONLEY, Herald Intern
Rabies knows no season, but statistically, with the warm weather comes an increase in the number of cases reported to Williamson County Animal Control.
So while the house is getting its annual spring cleaning, officials suggest getting animals their annual rabies vaccination.
To make more convenient for Williamson County residents, Animal Control, with the help of area veterinarians, will be offering Rabies Clinics for dogs each Saturday in April from 1-3 p.m. at various locations around the county. The cost of a shot is $10 per animal.
“This gives everybody an opportunity to put their dogs in the car and go to one of these sites on a weekend and get a reduced price (for the rabies shot),” said Debby Leddy, WCAC assistant director.
So far this year there have been four documented cases of rabies in the county including one in Spring Hill in February where two dogs, who were not current on their rabies shots, were euthanized per owner request after being exposed to a rabid skunk.
The annual number of rabies cases is unpredictable and hinges greatly upon the weather. In 2006 there was 11 cases of rabid skunks, but in the past bats have been found to be infected and a couple years ago a horse was diagnosed with the disease.
Typically, the spring and summer months will bring out more wild animals, increasing the risk for rabies, Leddy said.
Although all four cases within the county this year have involved skunks, one of the most common transmitters of rabies, the disease can strike any mammal, including livestock like goats, pigs and horses. People can also be infected, which is why the disease is such a concern, Leddy said.
According to a 2001 report by the Center for Disease Control, skunks accounted for nearly 31 percent of all rabies cases, second only to raccoons, however, the majority of rabid raccoons are found along the Atlantic Coast and Gulf of Mexico regions.
According to Leddy, rabid animals exhibit atypical behavior. Healthy skunks are nocturnal by nature but when they become sickly their habits may change and they could appear during the day, or show no fear of people or other animals.
“You will know if the (skunk) is acting odd,” Leddy said. “It may be out during the day in the wide open and it won’t seem scared of anything.”
Leddy strongly encourages all dog owners to find a way to attend one of the clinics, and all pet owners to have their furry friend vaccinated annually.
“Ultimately, you don’t want to take the chance,” she said. If an animal has been exposed to rabies and is not current with its rabies vaccinations, it will be confined or euthanized, “No one wants to be in that position with their animal.”
Do not approach or touch any wildlife, Leddy cautioned. Anyone observing odd unusual behavior in wildlife or has knowledge of a pet that may have been exposed to a sick animal, should call the Williamson County Animal Control at (615)-790-5590.
Saturday, April 7
Veterinarian sponsor Location
Animal Care Brentwood Crockett Elem. Crockett Road Brentwood
Beauchamp Animal Hosp. Centennial High Royal Oaks Blvd Franklin
White Oak Animal Hospital Fairview Elem. Hwy 100 Fairview
Rock N Country Veterinary Clinic Nolensville Elem. Nolensville Road Nolensville
Cool Springs Animal Hospital Page High Arno Rd Arno
PetVet Davis Grocery Leiper’s Creek Road Boston
Saturday, April 14
Noah's Ark Animal Hospital Brentwood Mdle. Granny White Pike Brentwood
Natchez Trace Veterinary Clinic Hillsboro School Pinewood Road Franklin
Williamson Cty Animal Hospital Franklin High Hillsboro Road Franklin
Mobile Vet-Childs Pinewood School Pinewood Road SW County
Bradford Animal Hospital Huff's Grocery Carters Creek Pike Burwood
Animal Ark Veterinary Clinic Bethesda Elem. Bethesda Road Bethesda
Saturday, April 21
Animal Health Care Franklin Grassland Mdle. Hillsboro Road Franklin
Battleground Animal Hospital Oakview Elem. Henpeck Lane SE County
Little House Animal Hospital Trinity Elem. Highway 96 East E County
White Oak Animal Hospital Fairview City Hall (new) Highway 100 Fairview
Crossroads Veterinary Clinic College Grove Elem. Arno/College Grove College Grove
Mobile Vet-Haber Heritage Elem Highway 31 Thompson Sta
Fairview Veterinary Clinic Hillsboro School Pinewood Road Franklin
Saturday, April 28
Little House Animal Hospital Wmson Cty Adm Complex West Main Street Franklin Franklin Road Animal Hospital Lipscomb Elem Concord Road Brentwood
Mobile Vet-Haber Fox's Grocery Bending Chestnut SW County
Mobile Vet-Childs Fairview City Hall (new) Hwy 100 Fairview
Nolensville Veterinary Clinic Nolensville Elem Nolensville Road Nolensville
Rock N Country Veterinary Clinic A & D Market Lewisburg Pike Harpeth
Posted on: 4/5/2007