This past Saturday, Oct. 26, was a red letter day for the dogs of Patrick County and surrounding areas. This was the 1st Annual Free Rabies Vaccine Clinic, and what a success it was. At last count, we provided 163 dogs with the rabies vaccine. It was a great feeling to see all the vehicles lined up at Rotary Field with their four-legged friends inside. This means that those animals will not contract rabies, a 100% fatal disease, and thereby will not pass it on to humans. In a rural area such as ours, it is so important to protect our pets from the abundant wildlife, which are the primary carriers of rabies.
There were so many people who came together to make this day a success. First of all, thank you, Lord, for the perfect weather for an outdoor event. To smoothly carry out the clinic, we had PAWS members, Stuart Rotarians and community volunteers who came Friday night to set up and on Saturday went from car to car filling out the forms, handling the traffic flow and doing whatever else was needed. We even had a young lady from Chapel Hill, N.C. who came to help. Thanks to Richard Rogers at WHEO for having us on his show to announce the clinic. Thanks to Amber at PetProvisions for the many early Monday morning meetings to coordinate the clinic along with Jean Grace, BJ Nolan and Dee Nolan, the planning committee members. A BIG thank you goes to Dr. Ben Coates, our newest Patrick County veterinarian from the Animal Clinic of Patrick County, who gave us his Saturday to administer the vaccines. Last but not least, thank you to all the owners who brought their dogs. You all have protected not only your dog(s), but your family, friends and neighbors as well. It was a wonderful day.