The reality of rabies

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Rabies Is Now A
“Core Vaccine”

While the incidence of rabies in horses is low, the disease is invariably fatal and has considerable public health significance. According to the new January 2008 AAEP Guidelines, it is recommended that rabies vaccine be a core vaccine for all horses.


Rabies is out there: The bat in the trees, the fox on the bridle path, the skunk in the pasture, the raccoon under your trailer. And while the odds are low your horse will get rabies, the odds are virtually zero that he will recover from rabies. So why risk it? Ask your veterinarian for EquiRab™ rabies vaccine and vaccinate every year.

  • Proven effective in horses and foals age 4 months and older.
  • Proven long-lasting – 14-month duration of immunity.
  • Proven safe – 97.7% reaction-free.
  • Proven convenient – just one dose for primary immunization.

Don’t take chances with rabies. Ask your veterinarian for EquiRab.


A little less spring in his step. A slightly duller coat. You can tell when your horse just isn’t doing right. Luckily, you have a partner ready to help get your horse back on track: Your veterinarian.

But even with the best skills and training, a veterinarian can’t perform miracles. When it comes to equine illnesses, the best course of action is prevention – through recommended vaccinations and other health management practices.

This website was written hand-in-hand with veterinarians to help you get up to speed on rabies. Follow the guidelines recommended here, and you can help reduce the risk of infection in your horse, and the risk of exposure to you and others who are in contact with your horse.

Of course, no website is a substitute for the wealth of knowledge your veterinarian provides. When you have questions or need advice, don’t hesitate to call your veterinarian.

You – and your horse – will be better off for it.


Understanding the technical terms surrounding rabies will help you better communicate with your veterinarian.

  • AAEP – the American Association of Equine Practitioners, a speciality group for equine veterinarians.
  • Encephalitis – inflammation of the brain, often caused by a virus. Rabies results in encephalitis.
  • Core vaccines – the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) defines core vaccinations as those “that protect from diseases that are endemic to a region, those with potential public health significance, required by law, virulent/highly infectious, and/or those posing a risk of severe disease. Core vaccines have clearly demonstrated efficacy and safety, and thus exhibit a high enough level of patient benefit and low enough level of risk to justify their use in the majority of patients.” The following equine vaccines meet these criteria and are identified as “core” in the AAEP Vaccination Guidelines: Tetanus, Eastern/Western Equine Encephalomyelitis, West Nile Virus and Rabies.
  • Reservoirs – animals that harbor infectious diseases, allowing them to be transmitted to horses. Skunks, racoons, foxes and bats are examples of the reservoirs for rabies.

Don't take chances with rabies.
Ask your veterinarian for EquiRab.