Section 3-7A-2

Dogs, cats, and ferrets to be immunized; sale, etc., of vaccine; vaccination exemptions.

(a) Every owner of a dog, cat, or ferret required to be immunized for rabies as defined in this chapter, shall cause the animal to be immunized by the rabies officer, his or her authorized representative, or any duly licensed veterinarian, when the animal reaches three months of age and subsequently in accordance with the intervals specified in the vaccine's license. Notwithstanding the above, the State Board of Health may establish by rule vaccine intervals or specific vaccines, or both, to be used in public rabies vaccination clinics, based on considerations such as county specific prevalence of animal rabies or risk of animal rabies and the vaccination rates of dogs, cats, and ferrets in a county. Evidence of immunization shall consist of a printed certificate furnished by the Alabama Department of Public Health, upon which shall be legibly inscribed: A description of the animal; its age, color, sex, breed, and tattoo identification, if any; the name and address of the owner; the lot number and type of vaccine used (modified live virus, inactivated virus); the name of the manufacturer, the amount of vaccine injected, and the date after which the animal is no longer considered vaccinated; and a serially numbered tag bearing the same number and year as that of the certificate. The certificate shall be dated and signed by the person authorized to administer the vaccine. Certificates not complying with the provisions of this section, or certificates issued by those persons unauthorized to administer rabies vaccine, shall not be valid. In lieu of printed certificates, licensed veterinarians may elect to utilize electronically generated and maintained certificates if the certificates contain substantially the same information as required above. A signed paper copy of the certificate prescribed herein shall be delivered to the owner of the animal immunized. A paper copy or electronic copy or evidence thereof shall be maintained by the licensed veterinarian for a period of one year past the expiration date of a certificate. An additional paper copy or electronic copy or listing shall be provided to the local rabies enforcement authority upon request by the authority and in the manner as so requested.

(b) It shall be unlawful and in violation of the provisions of this chapter for any person to import, receive, sell, offer for sale, barter, or exchange animal rabies vaccine, other than antirabies vaccine intended for human use, to anyone except a duly licensed veterinarian.

(c)(1) Notwithstanding the other provisions of this chapter, the State Board of Health by rule may establish procedures and qualifications for an exemption from the requirement for a vaccination for an animal if a rabies vaccination would be injurious to the animal's health.

(2) An animal exempted under subdivision (1) shall be considered unvaccinated by the State Board of Health in the event of the animal's exposure to a confirmed or suspected rabid animal.

(Acts 1990, No. 90-530, p. 816, §2; Act 2009-636, p. 1949, §1.)