Over the past 100 years, there has been a substantial decrease in the number of human and domestic animal rabies cases. This is due to the availability and use of a vaccine and the partnership of veterinarians, animal owners, medical doctors and public health officials. The Minnesota Board of Animal Health encourages pet and livestock owners to talk to their veterinarians about rabies vaccination.
The vast majority of rabies cases reported each year occur in wild animals such as skunks, bats, foxes and raccoons. In Minnesota, the skunk strain and several different strains affecting bats are most common. Domestic animals account for less than 10 percent of the reported rabies cases nationally. In Minnesota, cattle, cats, and dogs are the domestic species most often reported as rabid.
Warmer weather means more outdoor time for people and their pets. The first line of defense to protect your family from rabies is to follow animal vaccination guidelines set by your veterinarian.
For more information on rabies in Minnesota, view a historical graph of cases in animals, read about recent cases or learn about rabies in people.