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Putnam County Department of Health

News & Press Releases

A PHAB Accredited Health Department

The Putnam County Department of Health is made of several divisions all working towards improving and protecting the health of the community. Click on one of the options below to learn more about that division.

Are your pets up to date on their rabies vaccines?

14 September 2023

Last week a local specimen sent for rabies testing to the state lab in Albany by the Putnam County Department of Health turned in the first positive test result of the year. Most potential rabies exposures occur in the warm weather when people are spending more time outdoors and bats have returned to the area. The first lab-confirmed positive is a reminder that rabies is a year-round concern. This recent specimen, collected from a woodchuck which had encountered a pet dog, is a good reminder of this ongoing and deadly virus. Fortunately, the dog had been vaccinated against the rabies virus and it was not necessary to confine the pet. Instead, all the dog needed was a rabies booster shot.

The Putnam County Department of Health offers three free rabies pet vaccination clinics a year. The next is scheduled for November 18 from 10am to 12pm, at Veteran’s Memorial Park, in Carmel. The other two clinics occur in March and July. More information and a video on how to safely capture a bat can be found at

Rabies is a deadly virus that left untreated in pets and people is nearly 100 percent fatal. The health department wants to remind the public to promptly report any animal bite, or contact with a wild animal, to their office at 845-808-1390. After hours or on weekends, potential exposures should be reported to the department’s environmental hotline, accessed through voice mail by pressing extension number 3. A health department representative will return the call promptly.

Welcome Message

The mission of the Putnam County Department of Health is to improve and protect the health of our community.

We strive to prevent the spread of disease, protect against environmental hazards, promote healthy lifestyles, ensure access to quality health services, and respond to disasters.

We encourage you to explore our website and contact us if you have any questions.

In the event of an emergency, Health Department staff are available 24/7. Please call 845-808-1390 to report a public health emergency, rabies exposure, communicable disease, water outage or sewer overflow.
If you are a member of the media and would like to contact the health department, please email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Contact the Department of Health

  • Michael J. Nesheiwat, MD

    Commissioner of Health

Putnam County Office Building

40 Gleneida Avenue
Carmel, New York 10512

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