The time period for having your pets licensed without having to pay the late fee has passed and several municipalities have begun their census taking. Late fees range from just a few dollars more than the normal fee to as much as $50 above the regular fee. Regardless, it’s much cheaper and a lot less hassle than getting a ticket for not having registered your pet.
Pets must be current on their rabies vaccine in order to register. Rabies is spread through the bite of an infected animal such as a bat. If you recall, last year a lady was attacked by a rabid animal when she was out tending her garden; that was unusual as pets are much more likely to come into contact with wildlife than humans. The free rabies clinics that the county health department hosts are over, so at this point your options are your private veterinarian, one of the commercial clinics at Petco and Tractor Supply or one of our low-cost clinics, which are hosted on the third Saturday of each month.
Back in February, a puppy was brought into the shelter suffering the canine version of parvovirus; it is very rare to see that during the winter months. Hopefully this was not a foreshadow of the upcoming summer. We should also note here for our Vineland readers, center city Vineland had a number of dogs affected by the illness, so residents in that area should be especially careful with their puppies, senior dogs and unvaccinated dogs.
Parvovirus can be transmitted by anything coming in contact with an infected animal’s feces. In other words, you could give it to your dog by stepping in an infected dog’s droppings and then have him come in contact with your shoes. It is highly resistant and can survive for months on things like food bowls, floors or any inanimate object.
All of these terrible illnesses are preventable through vaccines so please head to the veterinary office or clinic of your choice. Vaccines are age appropriate and must be given at specified intervals ranging from a month apart for puppies and kittens for parvoviruses to three years apart for adult rabies shots. Please make it a priority to protect your pet’s health!