Rabies Testing

Environmental Rabies Testing & Prevention


Health Department program regarding rabies testing include:

  •  Acts in an advisory capacity when an animal is suspected of being rabid.   •  Requires the owner to quarantine any animal suspected of being rabid or
      that has bitten a human being.
  •  Sponsors rabies vaccination clinics in the community.  
  •  Assists the community in case of a rabies epidemic.                                        •  Provides community education regarding rabies.     


Rabies Prevention Program

KRS 258 Requires that every owner shall have his dog, cat, or ferret initially vaccinated against rabies by the age of four (4) months and revaccinated at the expiration of the immunization period as certified by the veterinarian. The veterinarian who vaccinates a dog, cat, or ferret shall issue to the owner a vaccination certificate on a form approved by the Cabinet for Health and Family Services.

The local health departments roles:

  • The LHD shall establish protocols for the quarantine of domestic animals that have been involved in human exposure incidents including biting, scratching or other cases where exposure to animal saliva may have occurred.

  • The quarantine period shall be for a minimum of 10 days from the date of exposure and shall occur at a place designated and approved by the Health Department.

  • In cases where the animal has been sacrificed or has died the Local Health Department shall assist individual bitten and or the veterinarian in the preparation and shipment of animal for testing.

  • It shall be the responsibility of the animal owner to assume any costs involved in the submission of the specimen.

  • The Local Health Department shall work with local veterinarians to sponsor mass immunization clinics to improve vaccination levels and further control the spread of rabies.

Preventing dog bites: Basic safety tips


  • Remain motionless (e.g., "be still like a tree") when approached by an unfamiliar dog.

  • Curl into a ball with your head tucked and your hands over your ears and neck if a dog knocks you over.

  • Immediately let an adult know about stray dogs or dogs that are behaving strangely.


  • Approach an unfamiliar dog.

  • Run from a dog.

  • Panic or make loud noises.

  • Disturb a dog that is sleeping, eating, or caring for puppies.

  • Pet a dog without allowing it to see and sniff you first.

  • Encourage your dog to play aggressively.

  • Let small children play with a dog unsupervised