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Low cost rabies vaccinations are starting up this year.

The Hamilton County health department says it’s imperative to take the time to make sure all of your pets are vaccinated.

Director of Environmental Health Bonnie Deakins says, “our bites have overall gone down a little bit, but they are fairly consistent this year.”

The Hamilton County Health department is gearing up awareness of rabies vaccinations.

Once the virus is contracted, it is 100% fatal.

From 2014 to 2015, there was a 10% decrease in animal bites reported.

And from 2015 to 2016, there was a 5% decrease.

Deakins says the agency does a good job of awareness and staying on top of disease control.

As the weather warms up, there are more interactions with people and their pets.

When they head outdoors and come in contact with wild animals, it may increase their chances of infection.

“There might be some years where we had several kids handles the same kitten that bites them,” notes Deakins.

The health department says the virus can be carried inside any mammal, like wild raccoons, bats and skunks.

She says, “you don’t ever want to feed wild animals; touch wild animals cause that’s where most of our rabies is and it will get into our domestic animal population if we don’t continue to vaccinate the rabies in our pets.”

She says there have not been any rabies cases reported since 2012.

And before that, cases were reported in bats.

The health departments annual low cost rabies vaccination clinic take place in 60 different locations around Hamilton County.

It starts this Friday and the cost is $12.

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