In Informative Articles, Rabies

As a professional bat removal company, we get a lot of questions about rabies vaccinations. When does your dog or cat need them? The short answer is, rabies vaccinations vary from state to state.

We’ve heard a lot of sad stories about our customers pets having to be euthanized or quarantined due to contact with a bat infestation in their home. Cats are actually the most often euthanized. People don’t realize that just because your cat doesn’t go outside, they still have the potential for a rabies exposure.

Better safe than sorry, friends. To make it a little easier for everyone, we have put together a list of each state’s individual laws below. Simply click on your state to see the rabies vaccinations laws that pertain to you.

Rabies Vaccinations Statute

Who Can Administer

Exemptions

Frequency of Vaccinations

Code of Ala. §3-7A-2 Alabama Administrative Code 420-4-4- .08 Rabies officer, his/her authorized representative, or any duly licensed veterinarian With consent of owner, a veterinarian may exempt an animal if medically necessary Dogs, cats and ferrets at 3 months of age, and subsequently in accordance with the label of the vaccine used
7 Alaska Admin. Code 27.022 By, or under the direct supervision of, a licensed veterinarian; lay vaccinators qualified to administer the vaccine and approved by the Department None Dogs, cats and ferrets in accordance with the Compendium of Animal Rabies Prevention and Control
A.A.C. § R3-2- 409 Not specified None In accordance with the Compendium*
Arkansas Code Title 20 Public Health and Welfare §20-19-302 Code of Arkansas Rules and Regulations 007 00 CARR 025 Licensed veterinarian or agent of the Department of Health None Initial vaccination for dogs and cats at 4 months of age and older. Revaccinations during the 12th month after initial vaccination. Thereafter, the interval between revaccinations should conform to the Compendium*
17 CCR 2606.4 Cal Health & Safety Code § 121690 Licensed veterinarians An exemption may apply if a licensed veterinarian determines, on an annual basis, that a rabies vaccination would endanger the dog’s life due to disease or other considerations that the veterinarian can verify and document Dogs must be vaccinated at 3 months of age and revaccinated one year after the primary immunization with an approved type of rabies vaccine. Dogs shall be revaccinated thereafter at least once every three years with an approved type of rabies vaccine.
C.R.S. 25-4-607 6 CCR 1009-1, Regulation 8 Licensed veterinarians A veterinarian, with owner consent, may exempt an animal from a rabies vaccination if the rabies inoculation is contraindicated due to the animal’s medical condition Dogs, cats and ferrets in accordance with the Compendium*
Conn. Gen. Stat. § 22-339b Licensed veterinarians When a licensed veterinarian has examined the animal, and determined that a rabies vaccination would endanger the animal’s life due to disease or other medical considerations Dogs and cats at 3 months of age or older. Animals vaccinated prior to one year of age must receive a booster vaccination one year after the initial vaccination. Animals shall then be vaccinated every 3 years thereafter
3 Del. C. § 8204 Veterinarians None Dogs, cats and ferrets at 6 months of age, and subsequently according to the label on the vaccine used
CDCR 24-901 D.C. Code § 8- 1803 Licensed veterinarians None Dogs at 3 months of age. Cats at 4 months of age. Dogs must be revaccinated annually
Fla. Stat. § 828.30 Licensed veterinarians If a licensed veterinarian has determined that vaccination would endanger the animal’s health because of its age, infirmity, disability, illness or other medical consideration, the animal may be exempt from vaccination requirements Dogs, cats and ferrets at 4 months of age, with a booster shot 12 months later. Thereafter, the intervals between vaccinations must comply with the label of the vaccine used
Ga. Comp. R. & Regs. r. 40-13-2- .18 O.C.G.A. § 43- 50-3 O.C.G.A. § 31- 19-5 Licensed veterinarians None It is up to county boards of health to promulgate rules regarding rabies vaccinations. For dogs, cats and ferrets being imported into the state, they must be vaccinated at 12 weeks in accordance with the Compendium*
Code of Hawaii Rules § 4-29-8 Not specified None All dogs and cats 90 days or older entering the state must be vaccinated
Idaho Code Annotated §25-2801 & §25- 2803 Under the direct supervision of a veterinarian according to Idaho Rabies Control Protocol and subject to county license requirements None Dogs, cats and ferrets older than 3 months, with booster one year later and then according to the Compendium*
Illinois Statutes Chapter 510/8 8 Illinois Administrative Code §30.90 Licensed veterinarians An animal is exempt from vaccination requirements if a licensed veterinarian determines in writing that a rabies inoculation would compromise the animal’s health Dogs at 4 months with a booster shot 12 months later. Subsequent vaccine administration and duration of immunity must be in compliance with USDA licenses of vaccines used
Indiana Administrative Code 345 IAC 1-5-1 Accredited veterinarians None Dogs, cats and ferrets at 3 months of age. Ferrets must be revaccinated annually; dogs and cats must be revaccinated according to vaccine label
Iowa Annotated Statutes §351.33, §351. 35; Iowa Administrative Code §21-64.25 Licensed veterinarians None Dogs at 6 months of age. Revaccination according to the Compendium*
Kansas Statutes §21-1213 Licensed veterinarians and those acting under the direct supervision of a licensed veterinarian None No specific guidelines
Kentucky Statutes Title XXI §258.015 and Kentucky Administrative Regulations 902 KAR 2:070 Licensed veterinarians in accordance with the manufacturer’s instructions None Dogs, cats and ferrets at 4 months and revaccinated 1 year after the initial vaccination. Thereafter, dependent upon the type of vaccine administered as certified by the veterinarian
Louisiana Administrative Code Title 51 Part III §103 Licensed veterinarians None Dogs, cats and ferrets at 3 months. Revaccination 12 months later and subsequently in accordance with the vaccination used
Maine Statutes Title 7 §3916 and Code of Maine Rules 1-144-260 Licensed veterinarian or under the direct supervision of a licensed veterinarian Dogs and cats may be exempt from vaccination requirements if a medical reason exists and an owner has a written statement signed by a licensed veterinarian Cats at 3 months, dogs at 6 months. Cats must be revaccinated one year after the initial vaccination and then according to the type of vaccine used. Dogs must be revaccinated according to the type of vaccine used
Code of Maryland §18-318, §18-319 Licensed veterinarians or under the direct supervision of a licensed veterinarian None Dogs, cats and ferrets at 4 months. They must be revaccinated according to the label on the vaccine used
Laws of Mass. Ch. 140, § 145B; Code of Mass. Regs. 330 CMR 10.02; Board of Registration of Veterinary Medicine, Policy Guideline13-01 (11/14/13) Licensed veterinarians None Dogs and cats at 6 months. Revaccination between 9 and 12 months from the initial vaccination and subsequently according to the vaccine used
Mich. Compiled Laws §287.266 and §287.892 Accredited veterinarians (dogs) None First vaccination for dogs by 4 months of age. Ferrets at 12 weeks of age
Minnesota Administrative Code 1705.1145 Licensed veterinarians, or under the supervision of a veterinarian None Revaccination in accordance with the vaccine used
Mississippi Code §41-53-1, 5 Dept. of Health, Rule 1.17.14 Licensed veterinarians or other competent person granted a permit to administer vaccine by the state board of health None Dogs and cats at 3 months and thereafter as required by the State Board of Health
Missouri Statutes §322.090; Missouri Code 20 CSR 2270- 4.031 Licensed veterinarians None No specific law found
Administrative Rules of Montana §32.3.213 Licensed veterinarians None Dogs and cats entering the state must be vaccinated by 3 months
Nebraska Statutes §71-4402; Nebraska Administrative Code 180-004.04 Licensed veterinarians None Dogs and cats at 3 months of age with a booster shot one year later and then revaccinated every three years
Nevada Revised Statutes §441A.410 Nevada Administrative Code §441A.435, §441A.430 Not specified A licensed veterinarian may exempt a dog, cat or ferret from vaccination for health reasons Dogs and cats every 3 years; ferrets annually
New Hampshire Statutes §436:99, §436:100 New Hampshire Admin Rules §2112.02 Licensed veterinarian A rabies immunization exemption may be issued, where illness or a veterinary medical condition warrants, by the local rabies control authority upon the written recommendation of a licensed veterinarian Dogs, cats, and ferrets at 3 months of age, with a booster shot between 9 and 12 months after the initial vaccination. Subsequent boosters as outlined in the Compendium*
New Jersey Statutes §4:19- 15.2a; Administrative Code §8:23A-4.1 Licensed veterinarian Municipal dog licensing officials shall grant an exemption for any dog that a veterinarian certifies in writing to be incapable of being inoculated because of infirmity, other physical condition, or regimen of therapy Dogs and cats 3 months of age or older receiving their first known immunization have a 1- year duration of immunity. Animals between 3 and 6 months of age receiving a second or subsequent booster have a 1-year duration of immunity. Animals 6 months or older receiving 2nd booster: 1 or 3 years’ immunity, depending on the vaccine used
New Mexico Statutes §77-1-3; Administrative Code § 7.4.2.8 By or under the supervision of a licensed veterinarian None Dogs and cats over 3 months and booster within 1 year of first vaccination. Annually or triennially thereafter depending upon vaccine used
New York Consolidated Laws Public Health §2141, §2146** and Agr & M §109 **excludes New York City Not specified Vaccination requirements do not apply to dogs, cats and ferrets for which vaccination against rabies would adversely affect the animal’s health, as determined by a licensed veterinarian Dogs, cats and ferrets at 4 months of age with a second vaccination within one year of the first. Subsequent vaccination in accordance with the vaccine used
North Carolina General Statutes §130A-185 North Carolina Administrative Code §41G.0101 Licensed veterinarian; A registered veterinary technician under the direct supervision of a licensed veterinarian; or a certified rabies vaccinator None Dogs, cats and ferrets at 4 months of age. Revaccination for dogs and cats one year later and then annually or triennially, depending on vaccine used. A dog or cat vaccinated by a certified rabies vaccinator shall be re-vaccinated annually
North Dakota Century Code §23-36-01 No specific law found None In accordance with the Compendium*
Ohio does not have a state-wide law requiring the vaccination of animals against rabies, except in certain situations. Ohio law requires that dogs that bite someone must be currently vaccinated against rabies before they are released from quarantine (http://codes.ohio.gov/oac/3701-3-29). Ohio law also requires that dogs and cats that are staying in Division of Parks and Recreation and Division of Forestry campgrounds must be currently vaccinated and display proof of rabies vaccination (http://codes.ohio.gov/oac/1501%3A41-9-10, http://codes.ohio.gov/oac/1501%3A3-3- 08). Persons residing in Ohio are permitted to purchase and administer rabies vaccine to their own animals. However, this practice is highly discouraged. Not Applicable Not Applicable
Oklahoma Statutes §1-508 Oklahoma Administrative Code §310:599-3-9.1, and §775:10-7- 9.1 Licensed veterinarian or a registered veterinary technician under the general supervision of a licensed veterinarian None Dogs, cats and ferrets at 4 months and at regular intervals thereafter according to the vaccine used
Oregon Revised Statutes §433.365 Oregon Administrative Rules §333-019-0017 Licensed veterinarian; veterinary technician under the direct supervision of a licensed veterinarian In the case of a need to vaccinate and the lack of an available veterinarian, by another person approved for this purpose by the State Public Health Veterinarian. Exemptions are provided for dogs brought temporarily into the state for periods of less than 30 days and kept under strict supervision by their owners; dogs for which rabies immunization is contraindicated for health reasons, as determined by a licensed veterinarian; and dogs owned by dealers, breeders, or exhibitors exclusively for sale or exhibition purposes and confined to kennels except for transportation to and from dog shows or fairs Dogs at least 3 months old shall be immunized against rabies by the age of 6 months in accordance with the Compendium*
Pennsylvania Statutes Title 3 Chapter 7A §455.8 Pennsylvania Rules Title 7 §16.41, §16.42, §16.43 Licensed veterinarian, or under direct veterinary supervision Owners of commercial kennels, dealer kennels, nonprofit kennels, private kennels and research kennels who have been examined and certified by the department may administer rabies vaccines to animals in the possession of the kennel An exemption may be granted for up to one year if a licensed veterinarian examines the dog or cat and determines that it would be medically contraindicated to vaccinate. After one year, the dog or cat must be reexamined. For dogs and cats, within 4 weeks of the animal reaching 3 months of age. Unless otherwise indicated by the directions of the vaccine manufacturer, a booster vaccination shall be administered between 12 and 14 months from the date of the initial vaccination, regardless of the age of the animal at initial vaccination. The animal shall then be subsequently revaccinated on an ongoing basis in accordance with the directions of the vaccine manufacturer
General Laws of Rhode Island § 4-13-31 Code of Rhode Island Rules 12.020.036 §4.00 – §6.00 Licensed veterinarians, or under the direct supervision of a licensed veterinarian None Dogs, cats and ferrets between 3 and 4 months of age with a one year booster shot. Subsequent vaccinations in accordance with the Compendium*
South Carolina Code of Laws Rabies Control Act §47-5-10 through §47-5- 210 Vaccination Requirements: §47-5-60 Licensed veterinarians, or under the supervision of a licensed veterinarian None At a frequency to provide continuous protection of the pet from rabies using a vaccine approved by the South Carolina Dept. of Health & Environmental Control and licensed by the USDA
Tennessee Code Annotated § 68-8-103. Tennessee Rules & Regulations §1200-14-01- .32, §1200-14- 01-.33 Licensed veterinarians or under the supervision of a licensed veterinarian None Dogs by 3 months and cats by 6 months of age with a booster at one year. Subsequent vaccinations in 1- or 3-year intervals in accordance with the specific vaccine used
Texas Statutes Title 10 §826.018, §826.021, §826.023 Texas Administrative Code § 169.29 Texas Administrative Code §573.10 Licensed veterinarians, or non-veterinarians only under the direct supervision of a veterinarian, and only after the veterinarian has properly established a veterinarian client-patient relationship
Exception: A
veterinarian
employed by a
county or
municipality, and
administers (or
supervises
administration of)
rabies vaccines as
part of a rabies control program
established by a
county or
municipality, is
not required to
establish a VCPR
before
administering a
rabies vaccine or
supervising the
administration of a
rabies vaccine.
None Dogs and cats at 4 months of age. The veterinarian has discretion on subsequent vaccinations as long as the due date does not exceed recommended intervals for booster vaccination as established by manufacturers or any local ordinance requirements
Utah Administrative Code § R386- 702-6 Utah Code 58-28-307 Licensed veterinarians, or under the direction of a licensed veterinarian Animal shelter employees acting under the indirect supervision of a veterinarian who is under contract with the animal shelter None In accordance with the Compendium*
Vermont Statutes Title 20 Part 8 §3581 Code of Vermont Rules §20-022-018 Licensed veterinarians, or under the direct supervision of a licensed veterinarian An animal may be exempt from vaccination requirements if, in the judgment of the veterinarian, the animal’s medical condition would prevent the development of adequate immunity to rabies. Animals so exempted must be inoculated against rabies as soon as their medical condition permits Dogs, cats, and ferrets prior to 4 months. Thereafter, in accord with manufacturer’s recommendations
Code of Virginia § 3.2-6521 §3.2-6525 Licensed veterinarians, or a veterinary technician under the immediate and direct supervision of a licensed veterinarian The local health director, in consultation with the state public-health veterinarian, may grant an exemption if vaccination would likely endanger the animal’s life due to a previously diagnosed disease or documented medical considerations, as documented by a licensed veterinarian. Initial vaccination for dogs and cats: 4 months of age and older. Then subject to local ordinance
Washington Administrative Code §246-935-050 Licensed veterinarian. Veterinary technician under indirect supervision. Unregistered assistants under direct supervision of a veterinarian or licensed veterinary technician. None Owners of dogs, cats and ferrets must have the animal vaccinated against rabies and revaccinated following veterinary and vaccine-manufacturer instructions
Code of West Virginia §19-20A-2 Licensed veterinarian or his or her assistant. If there is no licensed veterinarian practicing in the county, a qualified person may be appointed by the county health department to administer vaccinations None Dogs and cats by 6 months, with a booster shot after one year. Subsequent vaccinations every 3 years
Wisconsin Statutes §95.21 Licensed veterinarian; or Veterinary technician if a veterinarian is physically present at the location the vaccine is administered A city, village, or town may exempt the owner of a dog from the requirement to have the dog vaccinated against rabies for a year based on a letter from a veterinarian stating that vaccination is inadvisable because of a reaction to a previous vaccination, a physical condition, or a regimen of therapy that the dog is undergoing Dogs at 5 months of age with a one-year booster vaccination and then triennially thereafter
Wyoming Statutes Title 11 Chapter 31 Section 11-31-212 Licensed veterinarian None Dog or cat 3 months of age or older

*Compendium of Animal Rabies Prevention and Control

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