How Much Does a Rabies Shot Cost for a Cat?


Written by:  Howmuchisit.org Staff
Last Updated:  August 13, 2018

For those who have a cat as a pet, your veterinarian is going to more than likely recommend they keep up to date with their shots.  One of these shots includes the rabies shot.

This shot is highly recommended for cats that tend to stay or roam outdoors.

The cost of this shot will vary on your geographical location, the cat’s age and the vet clinic.

How much does a rabies shot cost for a cat?

On average, the shot alone is going to cost anywhere from $5 to $20.  There are some non-profit clinics that can administer the shots for free.

For those who want to get the shot done at a clinic, an office fee is going to more than likely incur.  The average office fee for a vet clinic can range anywhere from $45 to $100 on top of the shot.

Vetco Clinics, for example, charges $19 for a one or three-year rabies shot.

Rabies shot for a cat overview

With an office exam, the vet will do its basic checkup.  He/she will then recommend what the cat needs and the status of the feline’s health.

The shot will be administered, and paperwork will be given to you to show the potential side effects that may come in the future.  If any other shots need to be provided, these will be administered at the same time as well.  Most vet offices are going to have medical records of what shots have been done to the cat in the past.

If the vet suspects your cat has rabies, they will test the cat’s fluid via its skin, saliva or urine.

This shot will be required to prevent an infection caused by the rabies virus.   This virus is a single-stranded DNA virus and is transmitted via blood and/or saliva from an infected animal.  This is often transmitted through a wild animal such as a skunk, bat, fox or raccoon.

As long as your cat remains on its rabies vaccination schedule, it won’t be as susceptible to rabies.  This shot should be given around three months and every year after.

What are the extra costs?

If the vet finds something wrong with your cat while giving the treatment, additional medical expenses may apply.  These costs will greatly depend upon what surgery or procedure needs to be done.

Tips to know:

A cat may be allergic to this type of shot which can sometimes cause a life-threatening reaction.  This reaction will usually happen within an hour of the shot if anything does happen.  If this type of allergic reaction is found, consult with your veterinarian immediately.

Be sure to note that with any shot, there are going to be risks involved.

Check with your state laws as some will require it.

If you do believe your cat does have rabies, cage it immediately and contact your vet.  It’s important to quarantine your cat to prevent it from harming anyone in its perimeter.

Side effects may include fever, paralysis, dropped jaw, the inability to swallow, lack of coordination, changes in attitude or excessive salivation.   Rabies often comes in three stages.  The first stage will include the side effects prior, while the second stage will be known as the Furious phase.  During this phase, the cat will begin to behave in erratic ways such as biting itself or having seizures.  During its last stage, commonly referred to as the Paralytic stage, the cat will become unresponsive and weak; this can often lead to death.

How can I save money?

Find cheaper alternatives in your area such as the Humane Society.  If your location has a vet clinic, there’s a good chance that they offer low-cost shots.

Many kittens and cats today come equipped with all of their shots.  There could be a good chance that your cat doesn’t need the shot.  Be sure to ask for paperwork or ask the breeder to see what shots have been performed in the past.

A cat may not need a rabies shot every year if the cat stays indoors 24/7.  If the cat ever steps foot outside, it’s probably best to get it just to play it safe.  Remember, if you ever have any questions, always be sure to talk with your local vet to see what needs to be done.


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