Ph: (732) 449-9224
2129 Route 35
Sea Girt, New Jersey 08750

M thru F 9:00 a.m. - 6:00 p.m.
Sat 9:00 a.m. - 1:00 p.m.
Closed Sundays

Sea Girt Animal Hospital Pharmacy


  • Nellie, our Havanese, has been coming here for years.  The care has been outstanding and everyone who works at Sea girt Animal Hospital is always helpful and caring.

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    • Howard Flood

  • Awesome physicians and staff. Kind to the animals.

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    • Deborah Kulinich

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Thursday, 05 December 2013 00:53

What You Don't Know About Vaccinating Your Outdoor Cat

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Americans love cats. They are the most commonly owned house pet in the United States. Of the estimated 96 million pet felines in the country, less than half of them make an annual visit to the veterinarian, and about half of these pet felines spend at least some of their lives outdoors. Recently, I have seen several outdoor cats come in for illness and injury, and none of them have been up to date on their vaccines. This troubles me greatly, mostly because I know that I am only seeing the tip of the iceberg.

In a perfect world I believe cats are better off indoors, but I realize that many of them will be spending time outdoors, whether their owners want them to or not. While there are many reasons to keep your cat in, that is not the point I am trying to get across today. If your cat is going to go out, he or she is going to run into other cats. It is estimated that there are over 60 million feral cats in this country, to say nothing of the other pet cats going outside. Associating with or fighting other cats are the primary ways that many preventable diseases occur in our pet cats. Cats that go outside are at an increased risk for the following diseases:

  • Feline leukemia
  • FIV, or feline aids
  • Panleukopenia, a deadly virus that wipes out the immune system
  • Feline Infectious Peritonitis
  • Upper respiratory infections, primarily herpes and caliciviruses
  • Rabies

Of the aforementioned diseases, feline leukemia, panleulopenia, calicivirus, and rabies are all preventable with the proper vaccination protocols. The vaccines are extremely safe, extremely effective, and are not costly. While I realize that taking a cat to the vet isn’t the most enjoyable way to spend a morning, doing so once a year could literally save your cat’s life. However, there may be an even more important reason to do so, and it has everything to do with rabies.

Rabies is a deadly virus that is spread through the saliva of an infected animal, usually through a bite. There are several important things that everyone should know about rabies.

  • Any mammal can get rabies (cats are mammals. So are people.)
  • The primary rabies vectors in the US are foxes, bats, raccoons and skunks, which we have in droves in this area.
  • The number of confirmed rabies cases in New Jersey is on the rise.
  • The number of reported feline rabies cases in America far exceeds all other domestic animals.
  • There are multiple confirmed cases of rabies in pet cats in Monmouth county in the past two years.

Rabies is uniformly fatal. If you contract the disease the mortality rate is 100%. Rabies in cats and dogs is easily preventable with regular vaccinations.

If you find this information a little scary, you should. When someone brings their cat in with a gaping bite wound and tells me it is not vaccinated against rabies, it scares the heck out of me. While properly vaccinating any outdoor cat is vital to the cat’s health, the rabies vaccine is also vital to the health of the family that owns the cat. Additionally, vaccinating your cat for rabies is required by law in New Jersey. But at the end of the day, the point of this article is not to scare you, but to strongly recommend that if you own a cat, indoor or outdoor, please make sure he or she visits your vet once a year for its vaccinations, including rabies. It could save his or her life, and maybe yours.

By Michael Yurkus, DVM


  • My dog Finbar has been a patient at Sea girt Animal Hospital since 2000 and I can’t emphasize enough how caring and compassionate they are. From the front desk staff to the techs to all the doctors. Even the manager Candi has offered a kind word when much needed. I have always been treated both professionally yet with kindness as well. They truly show how much they love animals.

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    • E.F. Spring Lake Hts.

Sea Girt Animal Hospital Pharmacy

Sea Girt Animal Hospital

Sea Girt Animal Hospital is a premier animal hospital conveniently located at 2129 Route 35 in Sea Girt, New Jersey.

We have five wards, five exam rooms, 13 outdoor runs, two offices, large surgery and x-ray facilities, in addition to several treatment rooms and a fenced yard. We provide specialized care to dogs and cats, as well as rabbits, ferrets, hamsters, guinea pigs, gerbils, and some reptiles for routine exams.