Utica, NY (WIBX) - The Oneida County Health Department is urging residents to get their pets vaccinated against rabies, due to an anticipated increase in cases this year.

To protect animals and people, the Health Department is hosting a rabies clinic at the Clark Mills Firehouse on May 8th, from 5 to 7 p.m. All dogs, cats and ferrets, three months or older, may receive the vaccine for a ten dollar donation.

According to the agency, four cases of the virus have been confirmed this year; three in raccoons and one in a bat. In three of those cases, there was human contact requiring Post Exposure Treatment.

Officials suggest owners not leave their pets unattended outdoors and to keep food dishes inside the house. They also suggest capturing any bats  found in your home and submitting them for testing.

For more information, call the Oneida County Health Department at 798-5064 or visit their website here.