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Raccoon bite treatment: People and Rabies | CDC Rabies and Kids

People and Rabies | CDC Rabies and Kids

Rabies is spread through saliva, the wet stuff in your mouth. It´s not spread by blood, urine, or feces. If an animal has rabies and bites you – or licks its claw before it scratches you – then you could get rabies, too.

You can´t get rabies just by petting an animal with rabies.

If you´re bitten or scratched by an animal with rabies, the good news is that there are shots you can take that can keep you from getting the disease.

It can take one month, two months, or even longer for you to know something is wrong. The rabies virus attaches to nerve cells, working its way through the nervous system. Eventually the virus makes its way to the brain, and by then it´s usually too late for doctors to help.

Tell an adult right away! Have them wash the wound with soap and water for at least five minutes. Then have them take you to a doctor as soon as possible so the doctor can decide if you need more medical attention.

Have an adult contact your local animal control officer. If the animal that bit you is a pet like a dog, cat, or ferret, the animal may be watched for signs of rabies for 10 days. If it´s a wild animal, the animal control officer will try to catch it and then it may be killed so it can be tested for rabies.

In the United States, more raccoons have rabies than other wild animals, but it is bites from bats that cause the most rabies in people.

The problem is that bat bites can be so small you might not think they are very serious and tell anyone about them. If you discover a bat in your house, especially in the room where you´re sleeping, you should act as if you were bitten and tell an adult as soon as you can. If an adult can trap the bat, then it can be tested so you will know if it had rabies.

You can get anti-rabies shots right away. There are five of them that will be given over 14 days. Two shots are given the first day; one shot goes near where you were bitten and the second in the arm. The rest of the shots go in your arm.

The shots help your body make “antibodies”. An antibody is a special molecule that will attack the virus and make it harder for it to enter a nerve cell. If your body makes enough antibodies, the virus will die.

What to Do If You Are Bitten By a Raccoon

NEED LOCAL HELP? We have wildlife removal professionals servicing 95% of the USA. Click here to hire a local raccoon removal expert in your home town. Updated 2018. But read the below advice first!

There’s no way around it – you have to go to the hospital immediately.

If the raccoon has rabies, any contact to its saliva exposes you to the disease. Rabies is transmitted through saliva, and you can even get it through the scratch of a rabid animal, not only through its bite (the claw might have saliva on it).

Even if you are somehow completely positive that the raccoon that bit you is healthy, you should still seek out medical attention. Medics will be able to provide local treatment of the wound, and they will administer PEP (post-exposure prophylaxis), the vaccine used after being exposed to a raccoon’s bite or scratch.

Rabies is a treatable viral disease, but it will kill you if you don’t get vaccinated. Symptoms of rabies may include anxiety or agitation, headaches, fever, feeling of discomfort, trouble drinking water, an itching or prickling sensation on the wound, hypersensitivity to light, insomnia, and fatigue.

Raccoons are amusing to watch and pretty darn cute, but they’re truly a pest and a health hazard. Please, don’t engage them. Don’t initiate contact with raccoons, and never feed them or offer them nesting conditions.

Keep your distance from raccoons, and keep them at a distance from your property. You can prevent raccoons from accessing your property by eliminating any possible food sources they might be able to get to. This means securing the lid on your garbage cans so that they can’t get inside or open the lid by tipping over the garbage can, keeping pet food indoors, and picking up any nuts and fruits that may be laying on the ground. Don’t give a raccoon the chance to den on your property by capping your chimney, sealing any possible entry points to your attic, and securing your shed and porch with a fence. If you’ve already taken all these measures, and still have a raccoon on your property, call a wildlife removal professional to come and trap the animal. They will usually be able to asses why the raccoon keeps appearing even over the phone, and come that day, if not the next, equipped with all they need to trap and remove the animal.

Taking preventive measures that minimize the chances of having contact with a raccoon is always a smart move, but again, if you’ve been bitten or scratched by one of these animals, go to the hospital as soon as possible to get vaccinated.

Go back to the Raccoons in the attic home page.

Steps To Take When You Are Bitten by A Raccoon

Need raccoon removal in your hometown? We service over 500 USA locations! Click here to hire us in your town and check prices – updated for year 2020.

If you are bitten by ANY wild animal, we would recommend that you get yourself off to see a medical professional as soon as possible. The bite itself might not look so bad, and in some cases you might not even see much of an injury at all. Sadly, this does not mean you are safe. As well as the physical injuries you may experience when you come face to face with an angry, attacking raccoon, there are also more than a few disease threats to concern yourself with.

Raccoons are perceived as quite cute creatures, especially on social media, and although most of them would prefer NOT to attack you, there are times when attack is the only option they see they have. If you have them cornered in a trap, for example, and you’re daft enough to let your fingers get too close, there is a good chance the raccoon will attack, using its claws and teeth to cause damage. It will generally only be when you disturb the raccoon and corner it that you will find it could attack you, but it could get a tad annoyed if you disturb it trying to eat, particularly if it has been hungry for a while.

If you have been bitten or scratched by a raccoon, we recommend seeking urgent medical attention because of the threats of disease: rabies, salmonella, leptospirosis, and raccoon roundworm. As you can imagine, none of them are particularly friendly.

We’ll start with rabies. It’s super dangerous because you MUST get treatment (a vaccination) BEFORE the symptoms start. If the symptoms have already started, death is usually imminent. You won’t be able to know just from looking at a raccoon, or other wild animal, whether or not it is carrying the rabies virus. You won’t even know that the virus has been transferred until a few days or weeks later when flu-like symptoms start to show. You’ll more than likely ignore these, putting it down to just a common cold or flu, and before you know it, you’ll be very poorly indeed. And it would all have started from a seemingly insignificant raccoon bite that didn’t even bleed.

For the record, if a raccoon licks its claws and then scratches you, the rabies infection can still be passed on.

Although raccoon roundworm, salmonella and leptospirosis are generally transferred via the waste matter of the raccoon – feces and urine – they can be spread in all manner of ways, and often without your knowledge.

Wild animals are just that – wild. They are often dirty, rife with disease, and don’t particularly care about the mess they make while they’re tearing into your garbage can or pulling apart from the flower beds in your back garden. The last thing you will want is for those teeth and claws to be tearing into you. Keep your distance from an wild animal, and definitely ones that you know how those sharp teeth and claws. Respect them and they’ll respect you. Get a professional in to remove a wild raccoon and you won’t run the risk of getting bitten or scratched!

Need raccoon removal in your hometown? We service over 500 USA locations! Click here to hire us in your town and check prices- updated for year 2020.

There are many diseases associated with raccoons, mostly with the urine and feces that they leave behind. There are also many diseases that you can get from actual physical contact with a raccoon, however, and it is these problems (aside from rabies) that people frequently forget about.

Out of all rabies cases in the USA in 2015, raccoons were responsible for close to thirty percent of them, making them one of the most dangerous creatures across most of the south-east states. It is not actually that common for people to get rabies from raccoons, although, the numbers are on the rise with more wildlife-human interactions occurring.

Infections are a big deal when you are bitten or scratched by any wild animal. Being given the all-clear for rabies is obviously going to be something to breath a sigh of relief over, but raccoons and other wild animals, particularly scavengers, are not really known for the greatest levels of personal hygiene. They pee and poop all around the place, getting the stuff on their front and back paws and other places on their bodies. They do wash themselves, of course, but their levels of personal hygiene certainly do not live up to the standards that you and I are accustomed to living to.

If you are bitten or scratched by a raccoon, or by another animal, you run the risk of that wound becoming infected. You might think that it is “just a scratch” but unless you have had that coming straight form a professional, you can’t be sure that the scratch is just that. It could end up being more than that — you might need stitches, you might need a tetanus shot, and you might need treatment for rabies.

Although infections and rabies are the only serious diseases that you need to worry about as far as actual physical contact with raccoons are concerned, their feces and urine also contain a plethora of other dangers which can actually also be passed on through physical contact also — accidental cross-contamination. These include:

Salmonella and other bacterial infections that cause stomach upsets
– Leptospirosis

– Giardiasis

– Baylisascaris procyonis, also known as raccoon roundworm

Need raccoon removal in your hometown? We service over 500 USA locations! Click here to hire us in your town and check prices- updated for year 2020.

Although many believe it to be true, it is actually quite rare for you to come across a raccoon that has rabies in the wild. However, that doesn’t mean that you can get complacent when coming too close to these masked garden invaders — just because it is rare for a raccoon to be infected with raccoons doesn’t mean it can’t happen. It can happen, and it does happen. In fact, it has happened.

Raccoons and many other animals across the United States are known to carry the rabies virus, and any animal that has the potential to bite or scratch you, has the potential to infect you with the virus too. It’s not just you — your pets, your family, your children are all at risk.

Pets — cats and dogs — can be vaccinated against rabies and, in some countries, it is a necessity. By law, you must have your pet vaccinated against the virus. You certainly can’t travel anywhere in Europe without a ‘pet passport’ which very clearly displays the rabies-free status of your pet. If you do not get your pet vaccinated and it happens to come across a rogue raccoon in the back yard, the worst could happen — your pet could be infected with rabies.

In one year — 2015 — over 92 percent of all rabies cases were as a result of wild animal conflicts. The most prolific offender is the bat, with over thirty percent of all cases in that year, but the next culprit was the raccoon — responsible for 29.4% of all rabies cases in the USA for 2015.

In that same year, the highest hit areas in the United States for raccoon-related rabies cases were from Maine right down into Florida and across the South East coast to Alabama and Louisiana, and also in some areas of Tennessee, Kentucky, West Virginia, and Ohio.
Not all raccoons have rabies, but raccoons are one of the most responsible animals across the United States for spreading the disease.

Need raccoon removal in your hometown? We service over 500 USA locations! Click here to hire us in your town and check prices- updated for year 2020.

All wild animals have the potential to be dangerous and attack people, and the name really does give the game away — “wild” animals. They are wild, not domesticated, like your pampered pooch or feline friend. They do not know how to act in a “tame” manner — being petted by people, fed by people, relying on them for food, water, and shelter. They will find food and water in every way that they can and, unfortunately, they have started to associate people with food, water, and shelter. We’re feeding them. Sometimes deliberately, but most of the time by accident. Raccoons (especially) have sharp teeth and claws, able to get through garbage bags with no problems at all, and also to uproot or dig up tasty worms and grubs in your garden.

In some cases, people have been hand-feeding raccoons and in this cases, the raccoons get used to the interactivity. They start to associate humans — the human hand — with readily available food, and will therefore go up to any person to try and get food out of them. It is possible, in these cases, for a raccoon to attack people because they aren’t getting what they want, much like a toddler would have a temper tantrum.

Raccoons, much like other wild animals, do not attack for no reason. They’re quite lazy animals by nature, and although they can attack for food, and will on occasion, they will generally choose prey that is considerably smaller than they are — rats, mice, rabbits, smaller mammals, roadkill, and even the leftovers that you throw out in the trash. You’d be surprised at how much food raccoons can get from the pet foods that you leave out on the porch. No wonder your dog is so angry all the time. He’s probably hungry. A raccoon has been stealing all of his food. (It happens.)

Against a person, most raccoons would much rather run away. They know they won’t win against an animal as big as a person, so they probably won’t even give it a shot. There are a few exceptions to this rule, of course, and these are as follows:

1 – The raccoon feels threatened.

If you have the animal cornered or in a trap, it will feel threatened and is, therefore, more likely to attack.

2 – You are getting too close to a female raccoons’ young in the nest.

They will defend their young to the death in many cases, and although you will probably still come out of the fight better than the raccoon will, there’s a good chance that you will still experience nasty wounds.

3 – You are interfering with a male raccoon trying to find a mate.

Male raccoons are notoriously bad-tempered when it comes to breeding season. If you interfere with them finding a female and proving that they are the best male for the job, you’d better watch out. In fact, raccoons aren’t the only animal to do this. Peacocks will attack anything that gets in the ay of mating season, and they have even been shown to fight their own reflection in the windows and shiny surfaces of cars. Raccoons aren’t quite that silly, but they are still very grumpy when they feel the need to mate.

4 – You have been feeding the raccoon and all of a sudden stop.

Much like a toddler would have that temper tantrum we described earlier on, a raccoon will become aggressive and bad-tempered if you suddenly stop providing something that they have come to know you for. If you stop giving them a saucer of milk or food, for example, there’s a good chance they will literally break in to help themselves.

For more information, you may want to click on one of these guides that I wrote:
How much does raccoon removal cost? – get the lowdown on prices.
How to get rid of raccoons – my main raccoon removal info guide.
Example raccoon trapping photographs – get do-it-yourself ideas.
Raccoon job blog – learn from great examples of raccoon jobs I’ve done.
raccoons in the attic

Are Daytime-Active Raccoons Infected With Rabies?
Handling Raccoons: How Safe Is It?

What To Do If You Are Bitten By A Raccoon

Need raccoon removal in your hometown? We service over 500 USA locations! Click here to hire us in your town and check prices – updated for year 2020.

While all animal bites are potentially dangerous and should be given prompt attention, individuals that get bitten by a raccoon must of necessity receive immediate medical care. This is so, even if the bite is small and appears not infected. This is because the raccoon is well known to be a primary carrier of rabies, a potentially deadly infection. Other animals that carry rabies are bats, foxes, skunks, and coyotes.

What Is Rabies?

Rabies is a zoonotic viral disease that can be transmitted from animal to animal and from animal to human via the infected animal’s saliva. Thus, humans can get infected by the virus if:

– They are bitten by a rabid animal

– An open wound or cracked skin gets licked by a rabid animal

– They have been scratched by claws covered with saliva from a rabid animal.

Rabies cannot be transmitted through urine or blood, or via petting a rabid animal. Once the virus gets into the human body, it would attach itself to nerve cells and gradually destroy the nervous system. If the situation is not medically arrested, the rabies goes on to attack the brain, finally killing its victim.

Rabies Treatment

Death from rabies is on the high, compared to the survival rate. Nonetheless, it is a treatable disease and the fatalities can be averted with quick and appropriate medical interventions. See a physician immediately!

The symptoms observed in infected people include itching at the wound site, headache, fatigue, fever, disorientation and hallucination, insomnia, agitation, and hypersensitivity to light. Are All Raccoons in North America Infected With Rabies?

Prevention is Key

Whatever you do, avoid confrontations with any raccoon discovered on your property, do not attempt to tackle them or physically chase them. A cornered raccoon may defend itself by attacking humans or pets. Female raccoons with young are especially aggressive as they will protect their babies against any threat.

Of particular danger, are raccoons that display off behaviour, like being active during the day. While being active in daylight does not conclusively mean that a raccoon is rabid, you must look out for any of these signs:

– Repeated high-pitch noises

– Uncoordinated movement

– Discharge from mouth or eyes

– Matted body hair

– Unnatural boldness/ not shying away from humans

– Self-mutilation

If you suspect there is a rabid raccoon on your property, do not attempt to remove it by yourself, but immediately call your local wildlife control. Do Daytime-Active Raccoons Have Rabies?

The most effective way to bar raccoons from your property is to install high fences. You may also invite professional wildlife handlers to inspect and proof your house against raccoons.

Go back to the Raccoon Removal page.

Rabies: What To Do If You’re Bitten By A Raccoon, Dog, Bat Or Other Animal

While we should all feel blessed to be surrounded by raccoons, dogs and bats that make our fauna diversity more interesting and exciting, these animals can also be a potential source of rabies, a completely preventable disease that can turn 100 percent fatal when not treated immediately.

Compared with third world countries, nations like the United States fare better when it comes to fighting rabies. That doesn’t mean, however, it no longer exists. Early this year, some bats found in Irvine Regional Park in California tested positive for the rabies virus.

What Is Rabies?

Rabies is a viral disease that can be passed on between animals and between animals and humans through saliva. In very rare cases, rabies is spread through corneal transplant.

This means that humans can acquire the virus if they have been bitten or their open wounds or cracked skin is licked by a rabid animal. Humans can also develop rabies if they’ve been scratched by claws covered with saliva. It cannot be transmitted through other means like urine or blood, or by petting a rabid animal.

Once the rabies gets into the body, it attaches itself to the nerve cells, gradually destroying the nervous system. In its last performance, it attacks the brain, killing the person.

The incubation period is usually two to 12 weeks, but in some situations, clinical symptoms can occur less than two weeks up to at least a year, depending on how much virus the saliva had, the person’s immunity and the location of the bite. The closer it is to the brain, the faster the symptoms can appear.

Treatment for Rabies

There have been reported cases of people who survived rabies, but almost always, people die after the signs and symptoms of rabies appear. These include:

– Prickling sensation or itching in the wound site

– Fever

– Feeling of discomfort

– Agitation or anxiety

– Disorientation and hallucination

– Headache

– Fatigue

– Changes in behavior

– Insomnia

– Difficulty drinking water

– Hypersensitivity to light

There’s also no diagnostic test that can determine if the virus has already entered the body and how far along it is in destroying the brain.

However, people who have been bitten by an animal with rabies can be treated with a vaccine, which can be administered before or after the bite (the latter, called post-exposure prophylaxis or PEP, is more common). When the vaccination is performed, it can differ according to the degree of contact with suspected rabies:

These shots can be provided in hospitals, animal bite centers and vaccine clinics.

First aid can also be done prior to the vaccination. This includes washing the wound with running water and soap, then cleaning the area thoroughly. Exposure to rabies can also be prevented or significantly reduced by vaccinating pets annually.

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Rabies and Roundworm: Raccoon-Associated Infectious Diseases

Raccoons have a decidedly ambiguous reputation among their human neighbors. The animals are notorious for breaking into even well-sealed trash cans and enjoying a disastrously messy meal from the contents, yet their dousing behavior, in which they rub food from a stream in water to examine it, has given them a reputation (inaccurate though it may be) for a strangely humanoid fastidiousness. They’re resented when they move into an attic, ripping off shingles, destroying air ducts, and shredding insulation in the process, but they’re also frequently portrayed as adorable cartoon friends and even lovable chocolate rascals (Figure 1).
In reality, there is truth to both views of raccoons – they are intelligent, remarkably dexterous creatures capable of opening jars and remembering complex tasks, but they can also be problematic and even dangerous pests. While most unpleasant interactions with raccoons involve property damage of one kind or another, direct or indirect raccoon contact can very rarely result in deadly neurological infection.

Baylisascaris procyonis: Raccoon Roundworm

Like unscrewing jars and opening trash can lids, raccoon toileting is the kind of complex, skilled behavior that is fascinating to read about from afar and less fascinating to encounter in reality. Raccoons establish communal defecation sites known as latrines, often at the base of a tree or on top of a tree stump or rock. Apart from being generally icky, these latrines can pose a danger to small children who may consume raccoon feces or feces-contaminated dirt or debris while playing outside. This exposure can lead to transmission of disease, since raccoon feces often contain eggs of the raccoon roundworm, Baylisascaris procyonis.
When a human host ingests the eggs, larvae are released and penetrate the gut wall, entering the bloodstream and migrating throughout various tissues, including the liver, heart, lungs, and eyes. In these organs they cause visceral larva migrans and ocular larva migrans syndromes similar to those caused by Toxocara species. However, the most feared complication of B. procyonis infection is migration of the larvae to the central nervous system, where they can cause an eosinophilic meningoencephalitis that often results in permanent severe neurological sequelae or death (neural larva migrans).
Treatment with the antihelminthic agent albendazole in combination with corticosteroids may be helpful as post-exposure prophylaxis if administered promptly after recognized ingestion of raccoon feces, but its efficacy in patients in whom the parasite has already started to cause disease is likely lower. Fortunately, B. procyonis meningoencephalitis seems to be extremely rare, with fewer than 30 cases reported, most of these in children under 2 years of age.

Cross-section of larvae of B. columnaris in the brain of a laboratory-infected mouse, 400X (The appearance of B. procyonis in human tissue would be similar.)

Source: https://www.cdc.gov/dpdx/baylisascariasis/index.html

Neural larva migrans caused by B. procyonis is usually suspected on the basis of a compatible clinical and exposure history and consistent neuroimaging findings. Definitive diagnosis based on identification of larvae in tissue (e.g. from a brain biopsy or autopsy; Figure 2), is often not possible, but serological testing of blood and CSF is offered by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and can confirm the diagnosis in the setting of a consistent clinical presentation. A clinician who suspects B. procyonis disease in a patient and wishes to pursue serological testing must contact the CDC’s parasite subject matter experts, who are available around the clock for assistance with the diagnosis and management of potentially life-threatening parasitic infections, to discuss the patient’s presentation and exposure history. If the expert agrees that the clinical picture is consistent with possible B. procyonis infection, they will request serum and CSF samples be submitted for serology.


Rabies, another rare but devastating neurological disease that can be transmitted by raccoons, is as famous as Baylisascaris is obscure. Rabies is a single-stranded RNA virus that is transmitted by contact with the saliva of an infected animal, which may occur directly through a bite or by contamination of a scratch or wound with the animal’s saliva. In the United States, where aggressive vaccination programs for pets have been in effect for decades, wild animals account for over 90% of rabies cases. Raccoons have represented the greatest number of reported rabies cases in the United States for most of the last 3 decades, although this number has been declining since the early 1990s. The decline may be in part a result of oral rabies vaccine programs that target raccoons with vaccine-containing bait, which have shown success in preventing the westward spread of rabies in raccoons, which is primarily found in raccoon populations on the east coast of the United States.
Human cases of rabies are extremely rare in the United States, with only a few cases reported each year. In 2015, for example, 3 human cases were reported: one patient acquired rabies from a dog bite sustained while visiting the Philippines, one from contact with a bat in Wyoming, and one from a mongoose in Puerto Rico. Although the disease is extremely rare in the United States, it is a major international health concern, causing an estimated 59,000 cases worldwide each year, mostly as a result of dog bites in areas where dog rabies remains common – and the disease is almost universally fatal.
Prevention of rabies in humans relies upon a combination of animal vaccination and prompt administration of post-exposure prophylaxis (PEP) to people who are bitten or scratched by a potentially rabid animal. Rabies PEP includes wound care, administration of rabies vaccination and, for people who have not previously received rabies vaccine, passive immunization with human rabies immune globulin as well. Although some exposures always warrant PEP (e.g. a bat bite), in cases of uncertainty state public health laboratories can assist doctors in determining whether PEP is indicated following a specific exposure based on the prevalence of rabies in different animals in the area.

Direct fluorescent antibody test indicating rabies antigen in brain tissue from an infected animal.

Source: https://www.cdc.gov/rabies/diagnosis/direct_fluorescent_antibody.html

The diagnostic testing approach for rabies is different in animals and humans. Animals suspected of having rabies (including wild animals who have been capture after biting a human) are almost always euthanized for testing, although pets with a low risk of rabies may be quarantined and observed for symptoms of rabies following a bite in order to avoid euthanasia. Testing of euthanized animals involves a direct fluorescent antibody test (Figure 3) for rabies antigens in brain tissue, which is performed at state public health laboratories. If the test is negative, then the person who was exposed to the animal generally does not need to undergo PEP. If a human is suspected of having rabies, a battery of diagnostic tests are undertaken, which may include PCR from saliva or skin biopsies, antibody testing from serum and cerebrospinal fluid, and immunohistochemical detection of rabies antigen in cutaneous nerves found at the base of hair follicles in skin biopsies taken from the nape of the neck. This testing is performed at, and in close consultation with, the state public health laboratory, with involvement from the CDC if needed.

Preventing Raccoon-Related Infections

Because treatment options are extraordinarily limited for both rare neurological diseases transmitted by raccoons in the United States, prevention is essential. Avoiding contact with raccoons and their latrines is the simplest and most effective preventive measure. Sometimes, however, contact may occur, especially given raccoons’ willingness to live near human habitations, and in these cases prompt medical evaluation and, depending on the nature of exposure, appropriate post-exposure prophylaxis, is critical. Almost all diagnostic testing for Baylisascaris procyonis and rabies is performed at state public health laboratories and/or the CDC, and discussion with experts at these sites can help clinicians determine what testing, PEP, and treatment may be indicated.
Raccoons are intelligent animals with interesting dining and defecating behavior that are best observed from a generous distance. Anyone who is bitten or scratched by a raccoon, or who may have inadvertently consumed raccoon feces, should seek medical attention immediately. If you’re a doctor from whom medical attention is being sought following a raccoon exposure, or a lab being contacted about diagnostic testing, remember: your state public health lab and the CDC are the best sources of information about workup and management of raccoon-associated zoonotic infections.

Learn more about diseases passed between animals and people in Zoonoses: Infectious Diseases Transmissible From Animals and Humans, 4th. Ed.

Belmar resident bitten by raccoon in backyard, receives rabies treatment

BELMAR, Monmouth County (WABC) — A New Jersey resident was reportedly bitten by a raccoon in his or her backyard, according to the Monmouth County Health Department, prompting the victim to receive rabies post-exposure treatment.

The suspected raccoon has been captured by the Belmar Police Department with assistance from the Monmouth County SPCA and will be tested for rabies.

Rabies is fatal once symptoms develop, so experts advise residents to take precautions to prevent the spread of rabies by protecting their pets.

“Protecting your pets by keeping them current on their rabies vaccine is an important safeguard between wildlife rabies and human exposure,” freeholder and health department liaison Patrick Impreveduto said. “Not only does the vaccine keep your pet safe, but it can help keep you and your family safe as well.”

Officials remind residents that rabies in wildlife continues to pose a risk to pets and people.

In addition to vaccinating your pets for rabies, there are several things residents can do to protect themselves and their pets:

-Avoid wildlife and animals you do not know.
-Keep your pet on a leash. Do not allow your pet to roam; it can come in contact with rabid wildlife.
-Never feed or touch wild or stray animals, especially stray cats, bats, skunks, raccoons, foxes or groundhogs.
-Teach your children that they should tell you if they were bitten or scratched by an animal.
-Call your doctor and the local health department if bitten or exposed to saliva or blood of a wild or stray animal.
-Contact your veterinarian if your pet was exposed to a bat, raccoon, skunk or other wild carnivore.

“If you are bitten by an animal, wash the wound immediately with soap and water and seek medical attention,” Monmouth County Public Health Coordinator Christopher Merkel said.

Rabies is a preventable viral disease of mammals most often transmitted through the bite of a rabid animal, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The vast majority of rabies cases reported to the CDC each year from New Jersey occur in wild animals like raccoons, skunks and bats.

The CDC describes that the presence of rabies in all wildlife may be indicated by unprovoked aggression, impaired movement, paralysis, lack of coordination, unusually friendly behavior and/or disorientation.

CDC explains that the rabies virus infects the central nervous system, ultimately causing disease in the brain and death.

The early symptoms of rabies in people are similar to that of many other illnesses, including fever, headache and general weakness or discomfort.

As the disease progresses, more specific symptoms appear and may include insomnia, anxiety, confusion, slight or partial paralysis, excitation, hallucinations, agitation, hypersalivation (increase in saliva), difficulty swallowing and hydrophobia (fear of water). Death usually occurs within days of the onset of these symptoms.

For more information, call the Monmouth County Health Department at 732-431-7456.

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90,000 Rabies in a raccoon was detected in the Novorzhevsk district.

On November 17, 2020, the specialists of the Department of Veterinary Immunodiagnostics detected the rabies antigen in the pathological material from the raccoon.

Rabies is an acute viral disease of many animal species, which is characterized by severe lesions of the central nervous system. Always ends fatally.

Rabies occurs on all continents except Antarctica.It is not registered in the island states: in Japan, in New Zealand, Cyprus, Malta. This disease has not yet been reported in Sweden, Finland, Spain and Portugal.

The incubation period of the disease is on average from one and a half months to two years, but it can be less or more. Infection occurs mainly through contact of mucous membranes or injured skin with the saliva of a sick animal.

The likelihood of developing rabies depends on various factors: the type of animal that has bitten, the amount of the virus that has entered the body, the state of the immune system.The place of the bite is also important – the most dangerous in terms of infection are the head, feet (places richest in nerve endings).

Signs of illness:

Rabies can manifest itself in different ways, but always with damage to the central nervous system. Dogs and cats are most often violent, less often quiet or paralytic.

There are three stages of the disease:

First stage. Unreasonable change in animal behavior – desire for solitude, distrust or unusual affection, imaginary catching flies, change in appetite, vomiting, increased reaction to external stimuli (light, touch), hydrophobia.

Second stage. Characterized by increased anxiety and excitement of the animal, up to fury (attacks animals and people). As a result of paralysis of the pharynx and muscles, saliva is abundantly secreted, the barking becomes hoarse, the lower jaw drops.

Third stage. Paralysis increases, general depression, weakness and exhaustion of the animal develop, the body temperature drops below normal. After 4–5 days, the animal dies.

In 1881, while working in the field of immunology, Louis Pasteur received the rabies vaccine.In 1885, he first administered the vaccine to a boy bitten by a dog. The boy did not get sick.

Vaccines currently in use are usually given 6 times: injections are given on the day of the visit to the doctor (0th day), and then on the 3rd, 7th, 14th, 30th and 90th th days. If it was possible to establish observation for the bitten animal, and within 10 days after the bite it remained healthy, then further injections are stopped. During the vaccination period, it is also necessary to limit the consumption of foods that can cause an allergic reaction in the patient.

If you have been bitten by an animal:

If possible, the animal is taken to the veterinary service for examination and quarantine for up to 10 days; if the animal dies, a rabies test must be carried out.

As soon as possible after a bite, it is necessary to wash the wound with a concentrated soap solution and immediately contact the nearest medical institution (trauma department, surgeon’s office) to consult a doctor and determine the indications for rabies vaccination and its volume.In this case, the presence or absence of cases of rabies in the area, the belonging of the animal, its behavior, the presence of prophylactic vaccinations against rabies, the nature and localization of injuries, etc., will matter.

The main animal sources of infection are:

  • of wild animals – wolves, foxes, jackals, raccoons, badgers, skunks, bats and rodents;
  • 90,053 of pets – dogs and cats.

There are three levels of animal rabies susceptibility:

  • high in cats and cattle;
  • average in dogs, small cattle, horses, primates;
  • low in a bird.

For the prevention of the disease, owners of dogs and cats must vaccinate their pets annually, do not come into contact with suspicious animals, and in case of a bite by animals, immediately contact the clinic at the place of residence or the emergency room.

Pets are subject to vaccination from 3 months of age.

Take care of your health and those of your loved ones!


Rabies is an extremely dangerous viral disease characterized by severe damage to the brain and spinal cord.It is often fatal.

Rabies occurs in all mammals and is transmitted through body fluids, mainly saliva. A person usually becomes infected with it as a result of the bite of an infected animal, most often a dog, cat, rabbit, ferret, fox, wolf, raccoon, bat, etc.

At the initial stage, the disease is manifested by increased salivation and fear of water, as well as depression, which is replaced by bouts of aggression and excitement.

People at risk of developing rabies should be vaccinated.

Unfortunately, the onset of symptoms of the disease inevitably ends in death, so treatment involves only alleviating the patient’s condition.

Synonyms Russian

Rabies, hydrophobia, hydrophobia.

English synonyms

Rabies, Hydrophobia, Canine madness, Lyssa, Madnessan.


Rabies usually does not cause any symptoms until the last stage of the disease, when treatment is no longer possible.The incubation period (from infection to the onset of symptoms) ranges from 7 days to 1 year, with an average of 20-90 days. Signs of the disease often appear several days before the death of the patient:

  • before the onset of the main symptoms at the site of the bite, swelling, redness, itching may occur,
  • fever,
  • headache, malaise,
  • loss of appetite, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea,
  • anxiety, sleep disorders,
  • depression,
  • hypersensitivity to auditory, visual stimuli,
  • a depressed state of consciousness, anxiety, apathy are replaced by bouts of excitement, anxiety, aggression.Attacks of arousal are accompanied by increased breathing and heartbeat,
  • breathing and swallowing disorders,
  • hydrophobia – fear of water (when talking about it or when trying to drink, the patient feels horror, he has painful spasms of the pharynx and larynx),
  • excessive salivation,
  • hallucinations,
  • convulsions,
  • partial paralysis.

General disease information

Rabies is a dangerous viral disease characterized by severe damage to the central nervous system (brain and spinal cord).At the initial stage, it is asymptomatic, symptoms appear at a late stage, when treatment is no longer possible.

The prevalence of rabies depends on the degree of vaccination of domestic animals. It is most common in rural areas and occurs more often in the summer.

Rabies can affect all mammals and is transmitted through body fluids, mainly saliva. In humans, rabies infection usually occurs as a result of a bite from an infected animal, the ingestion of the saliva of an infected animal on damaged skin, mucous membranes of the mouth, nose, and eyes.Much less often, rabies is transmitted by eating infected meat. The disease does not pass from person to person; it is extremely rare that infection through organ transplants from infected donors can occur.

Most often, a person becomes infected from domestic animals – from dogs, cats, rabbits, horses, ferrets, less often – from wild ones – foxes, raccoon dogs, wolves, raccoons, bats, etc. Wild animals, in turn, infect domestic animals with rabies.

After the virus enters the body through the skin or mucous membrane, it reaches the spinal cord and brain along the nerve fibers, where it is fixed and begins to divide.Encephalitis occurs – an inflammation of the brain. This leads to an increase in reflex excitability and the development of paralysis. Then the virus spreads along the nerve fibers in the opposite direction, entering the liver, kidneys, adrenal glands, skin, heart, salivary glands, skeleton, causing disruption of the nervous system and dysfunction of various organs.

The rate of spread of the virus depends on the location of the bite (with bites of the head, hands, it will be high), its depth, on the number of pathogens in the wound, on the activity of microorganisms, on the immune status of an infected person.

The incubation period of the disease is on average 20-90 days, but can vary from a week to one year. Death is usually inevitable when symptoms appear.

Death usually occurs as a result of damage to the respiratory center, which leads to respiratory arrest.

Who is at risk?

  • Bites from domestic or wild animals.
  • Residents of rural areas who keep animals that have not been vaccinated against rabies.
  • Traveling to developing countries (Africa, Southeast Asia).
  • Leaving for nature and in contact with wild animals (foxes, raccoons, bats, etc.)
  • Hunters, trappers.
  • Employees of zoos, nurseries, animal shelters.
  • Veterinarians.
  • Working with rabies virus in the laboratory.


The diagnosis of “rabies” is presumed in the presence of symptoms of the disease after a bite of an animal and is confirmed by examination of a skin sample from the back of the head, isolation of the virus from saliva, lacrimal and cerebrospinal fluid.

Laboratory research

  • Complete blood count (without leukocyte count and ESR). The white blood cell count may be elevated.
  • General urine analysis. In rabies, there may be a significant increase in the number of leukocytes in the urine in the absence of bacterial inflammation.
  • A blood test aimed at determining antibodies to the causative agent of rabies. During the analysis, using a special immunofluorescent staining, the presence of molecules in the blood produced by the immune system in response to the entry of the rabies virus into the body is revealed.The diagnosis is confirmed with a significant (4 or more times) increase in the amount (titer) of antibodies to the rabies virus in patients who have not been vaccinated.
  • Determination of the rabies causative agent in biological fluids and body tissues.
    • Study of biopsies (tissue fragments) of the occiput skin, corneal prints. Labeled antibodies (molecules that specifically bind to the rabies virus molecule) are added to the resulting material. Under the influence of ultraviolet radiation, a complex of viruses “glued” with antibodies gives a characteristic greenish glow, which indicates the presence of a rabies virus in the material taken.This analysis is most reliable during the first week of the disease.
    • Study of the genetic material of the virus by polymerase chain reaction (PCR). Saliva, blood, cerebrospinal fluid, and diseased tissue can be used. The reliability of the results is close to 100%.
    • Study of brain tissue in the course of electron microscopy. A section of brain tissue is taken (biopsy), which is then subjected to special staining and examined under an electron microscope, which allows a very high degree of magnification to be achieved.At the same time, special inclusions are released in the cells of the nervous tissue affected by the rabies virus, or the virus itself is detected.

Other research methods

  • Electroencephalography (EEG) is a technique that evaluates the electrical potentials of the brain.


There is no specific treatment for rabies. As a rule, the disease is incurable and fatal.

In the case of a bite from a wild animal, washing, a thorough examination for foreign bodies (eg, broken teeth) and debridement of the wound are performed.Then immunoglobulins – special cells of the immune system – are urgently injected. Further, within two weeks, the patient is vaccinated (in total, 5 vaccines are used). This is the only way to prevent the disease.

After a pet is bitten, it is necessary to observe for about 10 days and if symptoms of rabies appear, urgently consult a doctor to take measures to immunize the patient. The source of rabies – a sick animal – must be isolated.

Treatment of rabies is aimed at relieving its symptoms – relieving seizures, relieving pain.For this, anticonvulsant, analgesic, sedative drugs are used, respectively.

To reduce contact with potential irritants, the patient is placed in a special ward.

Replenishes the loss of fluid, minerals; artificial ventilation of the lungs is carried out.


  • People at risk of developing rabies should be vaccinated.
  • After a bite from a wild animal, it is necessary to thoroughly wash the wound with soap and water and immediately consult a doctor in order to undergo a course of immunization and vaccination against rabies.
  • Prophylactic vaccination of domestic animals.
  • Pets should be kept at home and supervised when outside. For this, cages and closed corrals can be used. This will help to avoid contamination of pets from wild animals. Special attention should be paid to rabbits, guinea pigs, hamsters and other small pets, as they cannot be vaccinated against rabies. Often, a pet becomes infected outside the city, where it has the opportunity to contact wild animals, for example, cats, dogs can run away into the forest and come into contact with infected rodents and foxes there.
  • It is necessary to follow the rules of communication when meeting with stray animals – do not touch them, do not stroke them in order to avoid being bitten.
  • Contact with wild animals (eg foxes, raccoons) should be avoided. Healthy wild animals avoid humans themselves, so an animal that is not afraid of humans and does not try to escape should raise suspicion.
  • A pet bite can also be a reason for going to a doctor, for example, if you do not know if it can be infected with rabies, and even more so if the animal died within a few days after the bite.

Recommended analyzes

  • Complete blood count
  • General urinalysis


  • Dan L. Longo, Dennis L. Kasper, J. Larry Jameson, Anthony S. Fauci, Harrison’s principles of internal medicine (18th ed.). New York: McGraw-Hill Medical Publishing Division, 2011.
  • Manning SE, Rupprecht CE, Fishbein D, et al. Human rabies prevention – United States, 2008: recommendations of the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices.MMWR Recomm Rep. May 23 2008; 57: 1-28.
  • Hemachudha T. Human rabies: clinical aspects, pathogenesis, and potential therapy. Curr Top Microbiol Immunol. 1994; 187: 121-43.
  • Gerald L. Mandell. Mandell, Douglas, and Bennett’s Principles and Practice of Infectious Diseases: Expert Consult Premium Edition. Churchill Livingstone, 2009.

Rabies – Southern Nevada Medical District

What is rabies?

Rabies is a disease of the nervous system caused by a virus.This usually occurs as a result of exposure to rabies in an animal.

Human rabies is fatal almost 100% of the time.

When can people get rabies?

Although rabies in humans is rare in the United States, anyone can contract rabies after exposure to a rabid animal.

Rabies is spread when a virus in an animal’s saliva or nervous tissue (including the brain, nerves, and cerebrospinal fluid) enters a person’s open cuts, wounds, mouth, or eyes.

The likelihood of developing rabies depends on the type of exposure or “exposure”.

What are the possible effects of rabies?

Two types of exposure to rabid animals may allow disease transmission.

  • The impact of bite is any puncture of the skin with the teeth.
  • An off-bite effect occurs when saliva, brain tissue, or cerebrospinal fluid from a rabid animal enters any scratch, abrasion, open wound, eyes, or mouth.

Ingestion of a rabid animal or exposure to its blood, urine or feces is not considered exposure.

Which animals get rabies?

Only mammals are infected with rabies; however, some mammals are more likely to be infected with the rabies virus than others.

The following animals are more likely to be infected with the rabies virus:

  • Bats
  • Lynx
  • Coyotes
  • Foxes
  • Raccoons
  • Skunks

In Southern Nevada, bats are the most likely mammals to be infected with rabies.

Pets are less likely to acquire and transmit the rabies virus:

  • Dogs
  • Cats
  • Horses
  • Cattle

Some animals are not known to transmit the rabies virus:

  • Such as rodents
    • chipmunks
    • Guinea pigs

    • Hamsters
    • Mice
    • Rats
    • Chipmunks
  • Rabbits and hares

How can you tell if an animal is rabid?

Although some animals with rabies look and behave normally, most develop one of two forms of the disease.

  1. One form is rabies, in which an infected animal is easily agitated or irritated.
  2. Another is “dull rabies”, in which the infected animal becomes paralyzed (with difficulty walking).

Generally, animals infected with rabies become irritable, restless and nervous. The only way to know if an animal has rabies is to humanely kill it and test its brain for the rabies virus.

How long can animals spread rabies?

Researchers have studied rabies well in cats and dogs, so we know they can spread rabies a few days before and during illness. It is believed that the period of infectivity is the same for wild animals.

Pets infected with rabies usually die within seven days of the onset of the disease.

What if you think you may have been exposed to a rabid animal?

  • When a bite occurs from a wild animal, catch the animal if possible (see(See how to safely catch a bat below).
    • We often recommend euthanizing a wild animal so that its brain can be tested to determine if it was rabid.
  • If a pet bites a person or a pet, identify the animal, its owner, and the animal’s rabies vaccination status.
    • Contact the appropriate Animal Control Agency immediately. The biting animal must be quarantined for observation.
    • If the animal is still alive and looks healthy ten days after the bite, then it was not infected with rabies at the time of the bite and therefore could not transmit the disease.
    • Treatment of rabies is rarely needed following pet bites.
  • Immediately wash all bite wounds and scrapes with soap and water.
  • See a doctor or call the medical area as soon as possible.
  • After contact with a verified or suspected rabid animal, a series of prophylactic procedures should be initiated, including human immunoglobulin (HRIG) and human diploid cell rabies vaccine (HDCV).
    • The first medical examination and treatment is most often done in the emergency department, where HRIG and HDCV are most likely.

For specific advice on whether treatment is recommended, contact or consult your doctor at the Epidemiology Department.

How to safely catch a bat

To watch the video, click on one of the captions “Catch the bat!” links to the NYS Department of Health rabies web page, or read the “Safely Catching Bats and Disposing of Dead Bats” section of the CDC Rabies Web Page.

If you catch a bat (dead or alive) that may have bitten a person or pet, call your local animal control office for advice on whether / how it can be tested for rabies.

What if you think your pet may have been exposed to a rabid animal?

  • Immediately wash all bite wounds and scrapes with soap and water.
  • See your veterinarian as soon as possible.
  • If your pet is not vaccinated against rabies, he or she may be at risk of developing rabies and will need to be quarantined for an extended period of time and vaccinated immediately.
  • Contact your local animal control office to report exposure and for additional instructions.

How can rabies be prevented?

  • Vaccinating dogs and cats against rabies is the best way to reduce human exposure.
  • Avoid contact with wild animals and do not keep wild animals as pets.
  • Control of stray animals can reduce the effects of rabies in both animals and humans.
  • Incidents in which pets have come into contact with animals that may be rabid should be reported to the local animal control agency
  • People who come into contact with an animal that may be rabid should contact the District Health Epidemiology Office.

Where can I get more information?

Contact your doctor or the Southern Nevada Department of Epidemiology at (702) 759-1300.

Southern Nevada Animal Control Agencies

Clark County Animal Control
(702) 455-7710

Henderson City Animal Control
(702) 267-4970 (follow instructions for options 3, then 4)

Las Vegas City Animal Control
(702) 229-6444

Mesquite City Animal Control
(702) 346-5268

City of North Las Vegas Animal Control
(702) 633-1750

Boulder City Animal Control
(702) 293-9283

Rabies in dogs: symptoms, causes and treatment

Rabies is one of the most dangerous diseases that lies in wait not only for the loyal friends of a person, but also for the owner himself. It is very difficult to determine the presence of the disease without conducting clinical tests, therefore, for a long time, infection with the virus can proceed unnoticed.But the main danger of such a diagnosis is that the owner himself can become infected with rabies.

Symptoms of rabies after a dog bite in humans are manifested in an individual form, so you need to immediately, we repeat, immediately! Seek medical attention after being bitten by a stray animal – whether you suspect rabies or not.

Symptoms of rabies in dogs

In addition to the violent form of rabies, four more are distinguished, and with all four the animal will die. So that you know how rabies manifests itself in dogs, we will tell you about all the phases of the course of the disease in the most common form, which takes 2 weeks from infection to its death:

  1. prodromal, or initial.At this stage, the symptoms are manifested in the lethargy of the four-legged, lethargic and unwilling to move. However, along with this, the first signs of rabies in a dog can be exactly the opposite: the pet begins to fondle unusually and constantly ask for attention;
  2. manic. At this stage, it is quite simple to note the presence of an ailment. The dog begins to behave aggressively, hides from people, is afraid of light and water. During this period, the danger of infection for humans is the highest, since the animal can rush at people for no reason in an attempt to bite.Another symptom is paralysis of the lower jaw and larynx, which is expressed in the inability to lap up water and salivation;
  3. paralytic. The last stage that precedes death. The pet stops moving, shows no emotion and refuses to eat. The virus manifests itself as severe convulsions and irreversible damage to internal organs, which causes the pet to fall into a coma.

Briefly about the other forms: with atypical, lasting 6 months, the dog does not show aggression, but will be lethargic.The depressive, also “non-aggressive” form, is fleeting (the pet dies within 72 hours). Another type of the disease – remitting disease – differs in that the symptoms can either be obvious or disappear, so it is almost impossible to determine the signs of rabies in a dog. The abortive form, the mechanisms of which are poorly understood, is the only one in which the animal recovers on its own, but it is extremely rare.

Treatment of a dog

There is no proven effective treatment, which is why this disease is considered so dangerous.The only correct solution for the first symptoms of rabies in dogs is to isolate them and put them to sleep in the last stages of the disease. Unfortunately, confirmation of the diagnosis of rabies can only be obtained after opening the body and checking the brain cells for the presence of specific Babesh-Negri bodies.

No matter how scary the statement that it is impossible to cure a dog of rabies, there is prevention of the disease, which in 99% of cases will help to avoid a tragic ending. And this vaccination against rabies, how often to do it and what drugs are considered the best, you will be told in detail in the veterinary clinics of Kaliningrad.

As a rule, the vaccination is done annually and a mark about the presence of such protection is put down in the dog’s passport. During the period when vaccination is “active”, even direct contact with an infected animal will not be a threat to your pet. The dog’s immunity is reliably protected from the invasion of the virus: the chances of infection are reduced to 1%. So vaccination for dogs is an effective way to avoid meeting the virus and save the life of your pet, as well as protect yourself from infection.

But to avoid falling into that 1% when the rabies shot didn’t work, stick to simple safety rules.Protect the dog from contact with stray animals and try to keep it in sight while walking outside the city. If you went to the forest in the spring and autumn, you should be extremely careful, because it is at this time that the danger of catching an infection from raccoons and foxes infected with rabies is highest.

Contact the branches of our “Kaliningrad Regional Center for Veterinary Medicine” to carry out timely vaccination of your pet. Puppies are vaccinated already at the 3rd month of life, but if it so happens that your dog is still not vaccinated against rabies, take care of it today.Sign her up for vaccination at +7 (4012) 98-60-69.

What to do if bitten by a dog? | HEALTH

Rospotrebnadzor Administration for the Rostov Region:

In case of a bite, scratching, salivation by animals, all victims should seek medical help at trauma centers in medical and preventive organizations to resolve the issue of preventive vaccinations against rabies.

The disease of hydrophobia can be prevented by providing a course of specific anti-rabies treatment to persons who have suffered from animal bites (salivation).

The earlier the victim sought anti-rabies treatment after contact with an animal, the higher the effectiveness of vaccinations! It is important not to interrupt the course of treatment!

Also, annual prophylactic immunization against rabies of domestic and farm animals is mandatory, compliance with the rules for keeping domestic dogs and cats (registration, use of muzzles, keeping on a leash, walking in specially designated areas).

Compliance with preventive measures, timely seeking medical help, full course of preventive and routine preventive vaccinations will prevent such a deadly disease as rabies!

Rabies, an acute, viral infectious disease common to humans and animals, is an incurable, fatal disease.

Rabies is caused by a virus that infects the human brain, which is contained in the saliva of a sick animal.

The source of infection are animals infected with the rabies virus: foxes, wolves, raccoons, dogs, cats, bats, rodents, horses, small and cattle. The virus is not transmitted from person to person.

Please note that children are more likely to suffer from animal bites, therefore it is necessary to constantly educate them and try to avoid unnecessary contact with animals.Precautions should be taken when coming into contact with wild animals, including rodents. Incorrect behavior of children and adults often leads to various complications, severe bites, injuries that threaten health and life.

Beware – rabies!

MKU “UGOCHS” Rybinsk reminds: Rabies is an especially dangerous acute viral infectious disease with absolute lethality. Rabies can only be prevented; there is no cure for an already developed disease.Rabies kills one person every 10 minutes in the world.

What is rabies

Rabies, also known as hydrophobia, is a viral disease that causes acute encephalitis (inflammation of the brain). Found only in mammals.

Rabies virus characteristics: As a member of the genus Lyssavirus in the family Rhabdoviridae, rabies virus is an enveloped, bullet-shaped virus approximately 75 nm in diameter and 180 nm in length, having a single-stranded negative sense RNA genome.The genus Lyssavirus consists of 7 members, of which only serotype 1 usually infects humans, and the remaining 6 are rare causes of human disease.

The rabies virus enters the brain via peripheral nerves. From the moment of penetration, the virus quickly spreads along the nerve pathways into the central nervous system, and then further into the organs.

Rabies incubation period

The incubation period of the disease depends on the distance of the virus to the central nervous system (central nervous system), usually it takes several months.The incubation period of rabies is short (9 days), long (99 days), but on average it is 30-40 days. This period can be shortened if the bite was on the head, and lengthened with bites on the limbs. All this time, the person feels satisfactory. Well, except that she feels pulling and aching pains at the site of the bite and along the nerves and itching appears. The scar is sometimes inflamed. These symptoms are especially typical 1-14 days before the onset of the disease. Once the infection reaches the central nervous system and symptoms begin to appear.Rabies has the highest death rate – 99.9% – of all diseases on Earth. Any mammal can contract the rabies virus, including humans, and develop symptoms.

How long does the rabies virus live

This virus does not survive well outside of its host (in dried blood and secretions) as it is sensitive to sunlight and desiccation. Under the influence of ultraviolet rays, the virus loses its virulence after 5 minutes. In the saliva secreted by a sick animal, it lasts up to 24 hours, in a rotting corpse – 2 – 3 weeks.In the surface layers of the soil, it can be stored for 2 – 3 months.

How rabies is transmitted

Rabies is most often transmitted to humans through the bite of an animal infected with rabies. Bites to the head, neck and arms are most likely to transmit infection. The amount of the virus that has entered the body, reaching the lesion focus, is also a transmission factor. For example, when a bite must penetrate clothing, saliva can remain in the tissue and prevent it from entering the bloodstream.Potential non-bite transmission routes include contamination of a pre-existing wound, contact of the mucous membrane or respiratory tract with the saliva of an infected animal, exposure to aerosolized rabies virus in the laboratory (or from bats). Direct person-to-person transmission is theoretically possible, but rare and has only been documented in transplant cases (cornea, kidney, liver, blood vessel)

Signs of rabies

Rabies virus can cause acute infection with progressive encephalomyelitis and is usually fatal.The initial symptoms of rabies mimic those of other systemic viral infections, including:

  • fever,
  • headache,
  • malaise,
  • diseases of the upper respiratory tract and gastrointestinal tract.

This prodromal phase (the period of illness that occurs between incubation and illness) is 4 to 10 days before specific symptoms appear. Almost all clinical cases of rabies are fatal.Human rabies usually comes in two forms: rabid and paralytic (mute).

Violent rabies: accounts for 80% of rabies cases, encephalitis predominant and manifests itself as hydrophobia, delirium and agitation. Hydrophobia is the symptom most often identified with rabies; patients have severe difficulty swallowing and may be frightened at the sight of water despite being very thirsty. Other manifestations of violent rabies include hyperactivity, seizures, and aerophobia.Hyperventilation is often present, presumably reflecting a brain stem infection. Patients then go into a coma and usually die within 1–2 weeks, despite maximum intensive care.

Paralytic (silent) rabies: Unlike violent rabies, patients with paralytic rabies do not have signs of irritation of the cerebral cortex, and instead there is ascending paralysis or symmetrical tetraparalysis. As the condition progresses, the patient loses consciousness, and death may occur, preceded by a coma.

Where rabies is common in the world

Rabies occurs throughout the world, with the exception of Antarctica and some island states. The vast majority of cases occur in areas of uncontrolled rabies in domestic dogs. For epidemiological purposes, rabies is divided into two types: urban and forest.

Urban rabies: occurs primarily in developing countries in Asia and Africa.

Sylvanian rabies: is most common in the developed countries of the northern hemisphere.

Rabies is estimated to cause 55,000 deaths worldwide each year, the vast majority of which occur in Africa and Asia. Several countries, most of which are islands, are rabies free, including the British Isles, New Zealand, Japan, Taiwan, many of the Caribbean, Sweden, Norway, and Spain. These countries remain rabies free due to the strictness of their quarantine laws on imported animals. Australia was once thought to be rabies free, but now bat-borne rabies is endemic here.

Human rabies symptoms

Following a typical human bite infection, the virus enters the peripheral nervous system. It then travels along the nerves to the central nervous system. At this stage, the virus cannot be detected. The time between infection and the onset of the first flu-like symptoms is usually two to twelve weeks, but can last as long as two years.


  • malaise,
  • headache,
  • high temperature.

Once the virus reaches the brain, it quickly causes encephalitis. This second phase is called the “prodromal” phase. At this time, the treatment is useless. Symptoms will now begin to show. Rabies can also cause myelitis; spinal cord inflammation.


  • mild or partial paralysis,
  • cerebral dysfunction, anxiety,
  • insomnia,
  • confusion,
  • extreme arousal,
  • abnormal behavior,
  • paranoia,
  • terror,
  • hallucinations (turning into delirium),
  • acute pain,
  • violent movements,
  • uncontrollable excitability,
  • depression,
  • excessive salivation,
  • inability to speak or swallow water (hence the name hydrophobia)

Final stage:

  • periods of mania,
  • lethargy,
  • coma.

Death (which usually occurs due to respiratory failure) almost always occurs two to ten days after the first symptoms appear. The few people known to have survived the disease are left with severe brain damage.

Which animals have rabies

Humans and many mammals, most commonly wild and domestic canines (eg dogs, foxes, coyotes), mustelids (eg skunks, badgers, martens), viverids (eg mongooses, civets, genetics), procyonids (eg raccoons) , and insectivorous and hematopoietic bats.

Urban rabies: stray dogs.

Forest rabies: dogs, foxes, coyotes, wolves, jackals, skunks, raccoons, mongooses and other biting mammals such as bats.

Infectious dose: unknown.

Rabies symptoms in animals

Stage One is a period of one to three days characterized by behavioral changes known as the prodromal stage.

The second stage – the stage of excitement, lasts from three to four days. It is this stage that is often known as rabies because of the tendency of the affected animal to become hyperresponsive to external stimuli and to bite something nearby.

Third stage – paralytic stage caused by damage to motor neurons. Coordination disorder is observed due to paralysis of the hind limbs and salivation, and difficulty swallowing is caused by paralysis of the facial and pharyngeal muscles.As in humans, death is usually caused by respiratory failure.

First aid for suspected rabies

Symptom monitoring is inadequate because by the time symptoms become evident, rabies is invariably fatal. There are no diagnostic methods during the incubation period. After the incubation period, detection methods include virus isolation, RT-PCR, and direct immunofluorescence of clinical samples (a set of immunological methods for the qualitative and quantitative determination of surface and intracellular antigens in cell suspension samples).

First aid for rabies begins with decontamination of the wound, which can reduce the risk of rabies by up to 90%. Wash the wound with soapy water, then 70% ethanol or iodine-containing solution. After caring for the wound, the physician must decide whether to administer the immunization passive and / or active.

Rabies treatment

There is no established treatment for rabies after symptom onset; almost all patients die from the disease or its complications within a few weeks of its onset.Supportive care includes intubation, sedation, mechanical ventilation, fluid and electrolyte administration, nutrition, and treatment of intercurrent illness and complications.

Almost every case of rabies infection resulted in death until Louis Pasteur and Émile Roux developed a vaccine in 1885. Their original vaccine came from infected rabbits whose nerve tissue was weakened if allowed to dry for five to ten days. Similar neural tissue vaccines are still used in some countries today because they are less expensive than current cell culture vaccines.The human diploid cell rabies (HDCV) vaccine was introduced in 1967; however, a new and less expensive purified chicken embryo cell vaccine and a purified vero cell rabies vaccine are now available.

Post-exposure treatment, known as postexposure prophylaxis or “PEP,” is very effective in preventing disease when given promptly, usually within ten days of exposure. Wash the wound thoroughly with soap and water as soon as possible for about five minutes to reduce the number of viral particles.If possible, a virucidal antiseptic such as povidone iodine, tincture of iodine, aqueous iodine, or alcohol (ethanol) should be applied after washing. Open mucous membranes such as eyes, nose or mouth should be rinsed well with water.

Administer one dose of immunoglobulin and five doses of rabies vaccine over twenty-eight days. If possible, half the dose of immunoglobulin is injected into the area of ​​the bite. the rest is injected intramuscularly away from the bite. It is less painful compared to injecting immunoglobulin through the abdominal wall with a large needle, as has been done in the past.

The first dose of rabies vaccine is given as soon as possible after exposure, and additional doses are given on the third, seventh, fourteenth and twenty-eighth days after the first. Patients who have previously received pre-exposure vaccination do not receive immunoglobulin, only post-exposure vaccinations at 0 and 3 days.

Due to the widespread vaccination of domestic dogs and cats and the development of effective vaccines for humans and treatment with immunoglobulin, the number of vaccinations has decreased the number of reported deaths.

In cases where PEP is used as a precautionary measure (for example, a person wakes up and finds a bat in the room he slept in), it is now mainly done in the gluteal region and deltoid (shoulder).
The number of injections in the gluteal region on the first day is determined by weight, and often three such injections are required. Subsequent injections of immunoglobulin (to create longer immunity to rabies) are given in the arm.These shots are no more painful than regular shots (such as tetanus vaccines).

Although the virus is treatable only during the incubation period, it is important to note that it is not completely treatable. It is completely treatable as long as the virus is present in tissues made up of cells other than neurons, such as skin and muscle. However, once the infection spreads to a neuron, the virus is isolated from the immune system and eventually travels to the spinal cord and then to the brain.

Treatment at this stage may not be effective, even if symptoms may appear after several weeks or even months.

Therefore, it is strongly recommended to conduct the control panel as soon as possible. When started immediately or with very little delay, PEP is very effective against rabies. In case there was a significant delay in assigning control panel

How to kill the rabies virus

The rabies virus is neutralized by exposure to 70% ethanol, phenol, formalin, ether, trypsin, β-propiolactone and some other detergents.

Rabies virus does not tolerate pH below 3 or above 11 and is inactivated by ultraviolet light.

How much can you drink after rabies

Alcohol abuse is known to disrupt the immune system, increasing the risk of infectious diseases and complications. Considering that rabies is a fatal infection, and vaccination is carried out more often for the purpose of emergency prevention (that is, it means that the rabies virus has entered the body), the last thing to do is to interfere with the immune system in the fight against a potential threat.

We strongly recommend that you refrain from drinking alcohol throughout the entire course of vaccination and for at least 14 days after its completion.

Take care of yourself and your loved ones!

In case of non-standard situations, please call:

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Police 02; from cell – 02 *
Duty officer on dutyRybinsk 8-4855-29-51-12
Duty officer of the Rybinsk municipal district 8-8455-28-01-91
Cellular – rescue services 112
Ambulance 03; from cell – 003, or 03 *

90,000 Kaliningrad nuns are nursing a raccoon that fell ill after a tick bite (photo) – Animals – Kaliningrad poster

In St. Elisabeth Convent, a raccoon is nursed after being bitten by a tick.This was reported on the page of the monastery “VKontakte”.

According to the nuns, a resident of the village of Zapovednoye Viktor found the exhausted animal, reported this to the local newspaper, and the correspondents, in turn, turned to the monastery. “Yesterday he came to us barely alive,” the attendants write. – In the veterinary clinic, where we brought the animal, the doctor said that the bill had been going on for hours. For almost two hours, doctors did not unbend over the little body – droppers, injections, wound treatment. By the end of the procedures, the raccoon opened her eyes (this is a girl) and began to swallow glucose, which they tried to give her from a syringe.“The animal is very“ heavy ”, extreme dehydration and exhaustion. The probability of surviving the night is 20% “- the doctor said goodbye, giving him recommendations on the road: how many injections to do at night, how to monitor the temperature. The raccoon literally “cooled down” – it had to be surrounded by warm bottles, warmed up, and tried to drink. Closer to midnight, our gargle raccoon began to breathe evenly and calmly, the body temperature rose to normal, she asked for a drink, and in the morning she even ate some minced chicken! ”

Now the nuns are monitoring the condition of the raccoon – they feed, watered, and treat the wounds.The animal is on the mend, they note. When the raccoon recovers, they plan to settle him in one of the aviaries of the “Bird Park” at the monastery.

“But now the baby raccoon is still in intensive care, in addition to all she has severe anemia – every day she needs injections and droppers, diapers, specific postoperative feed, control of a specialist veterinarian. We ask for a little financial support for the treatment of our unusual pet! ” – reported in the group of St. Elisabeth Convent.

The account for transferring donations can be found on the monastery page.