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Pets & Vaccines During COVID-19

Posted By SLCo Animal Services
April 02, 2020

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Because of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, Salt Lake County Animal Services has suspended most of its services to the public, including its vaccination programs. You may be wondering how this will affect your pets that are in need of vaccines during this pandemic.

Although Animal Services is not currently open to the public, Salt Lake County's "Stay Safe. Stay Home" public order designates veterinary clinics as essential services. If your pet is due for vaccinations at this time or has other urgent medical needs, please contact your local veterinarian to discuss what serves they can provide for you. Although many veterinary clinics are open, there is a state public health order limiting them from performing some elective procedures, so some vaccines many not be available.

If you are unable to find a place to vaccinate your pet or you can't/don't want to leave your house during this pandemic, don't fret too much about your pet's vaccines! As the World Small Animal Veterinary Association's (WSAVA)  recently-released guidelines point out, many animals that have received vaccines in the past will continue to have some immunity to those diseases for awhile after they are due for a booster. Additionally, for many of the diseases we vaccinate animals against, animals are most at risk of contracting the disease when they are in public places or around other animals, such as at groomers or boarding facilities. Because most animals are staying at home with their owners during this outbreak, they are at a low risk of being exposed to the diseases we vaccinate against. So if you have a well-vaccinated animal that is staying at home, there is little risk in waiting a couple months to have them re-vaccinated. Just remember to get them back up to date once this pandemic is over! Vaccinating your pets is an essential part of protecting not only their health, but yours as well.

Ryan Hill, DVM
Salt Lake County Animal Services