dog catFREEHOLD, NJ – The Monmouth County Health Department (MCHD) is offering ten free rabies clinics for pets of Monmouth County residents from January through April.

Dates, times and locations of the upcoming rabies clinics are available on the Health Department section of the County’s website at www.VisitMonmouth.com.

“Protecting your pets by keeping them current on their rabies vaccine is an important buffer between wildlife rabies and human exposure,” said Freeholder John P. Curley, liaison to the MCHD. “Not only does the vaccine keep your pet safe; it can help keep you and your family safe as well.”

Rabies is a deadly disease caused by a virus that is found in the saliva of a rabid animal and is transmitted most commonly by a bite.

“This is a great time to check your pet’s vaccination and health records and make sure they are current,” said Christopher Merkel, Monmouth County’s Public Health Coordinator.

Dogs and cats who receive an initial rabies vaccination are not considered immunized until 28 days after the vaccine has been administered, therefore it is strongly recommended that any animal newly vaccinated or those too young to receive the vaccine (less than three months) not be left outdoors unattended.

Monmouth County residents can bring their cats and dogs to the rabies clinics offered on ten dates through April:

  • Tuesday, Jan. 12 from 7 to 8:30 p.m. – Manasquan First Aid Building, 66 Broad St.
  • Saturday, Jan. 16 from 9 to 11 a.m. – Oceanport Firehouse, 433 Myrtle Ave.
  • Wednesday, Jan. 20 from 5 to 7 p.m. – Bradley Beach Firehouse, 815 Main St. (rear)
  • Saturday, Jan. 23 from 1 to 2 p.m. – Millstone Public Works Garage, Perrineville Road
  • Saturday, March 5 from 2 to 3 p.m. – Shrewsbury Township, 1979 Crawford Street
  • Thursday, March 10 from 6 to 7 p.m. – Neptune City Public Works Building,106 West Sylvania Ave.
  • Wednesday, March 16 from 6 to 7:30 p.m. – Atlantic Highlands, Firehouse at First and East Mount Avenues
  • Saturday, March 19 from 9 to 11 a.m. – Allentown, Public Works Garage, Church Street
  • Wednesday, March 30 from 6 to 7 p.m. – Lake Como, Firehouse at 1730 Main St.
  • Saturday, April 23 from 10 a.m. to noon – Marlboro, Public Works Garage, Wyncrest Road

“It is important to remember that cats and dogs, as well as other indoor animals, should be vaccinated for rabies,” said Merkel. “According to the latest published data by the CDC, cats continue to be the number one domestic animal confirmed with rabies: nationally, 247 cats confirmed in 2013 compared to 89 dogs.”

No appointments are necessary, but vaccines are given on a first-come, first-served basis. For more information, call the County Health Department at 732-431-7456.