Rabies is a deadly virus that kills up to approximately 5,000 animals a year in the US. The rabies virus is a zoonotic disease which means it can be transmitted between animals and humans. We’ll see how do dogs get rabies in detail in this article.
Rabies also only affects warm-blooded creatures. In the US the rabies virus can be found in every state but Hawaii. How animals get rabies can vary, how they contact the rabies vaccine can be a factor in the incubation period.
Reporting a stray dog or a wild pet if you think they have rabies could save thousands of animals and humans a year.
How do dogs get rabies? What causes dogs to have rabies?
There are a few ways dogs can get rabies. Rabies is transmitted through your canine getting bitten. Your dog can also get infected if it has suffered from a wound or scratch while being exposed to the virus.
Most dogs that get rabies tend to have been exposed to the virus through wild animals. In the United States, the most common carrier of rabies disease is raccoons, skunks, foxes, and bats.
Although millions of animals die a year from rabies it is not sure how common rabies is in dogs as many cases go on reported. In 2018 on 63 cases were reported.
Rabies can also only be confirmed once the subject is dead. Research has also shown peak of transmission of the virus is during the summer as there are many wild animals your pet can come in contact with.
Can a dog get rabies from Eating something?
If your dog eats the poop of an animal that has rabies they can not et infected. The virus can be transmitted if your dog eats a dead animal that has rabies. The risk of your dog getting rabies by licking a dead animal is very small.
Rabies is not transmitted through blood or feces. Rabies is also not transmitted through uninjured skin. If your dog licks the skin of another animal that has rabies it is unlikely your dog gets infected if the animal has no open wounds.
Rabies is more likely to be transmitted through saliva between animals or an infected animal biting the other.
How would I know if my dog has rabies?
The signs of rabies in dogs are pretty obvious depending on your dog. First, you should check how your dog may have got rabies. Check to see if the canine has any bite marks or any unusual scratches on them.
If you notice any injuries you should quarantine your dog from everyone and contact a vet for instructions on what should be done next. You should also watch out for symptoms.
The most know symptom is dogs becoming aggressive. If your dog has rabies they will grow restless, become more irritable and uncontrollable.
You will also notice dogs that have rabies tend to snap or bite at other animals and humans including their owners. If your dog was bitten they will constantly chew and lick where they were bitten, a fever will also begin in the early stages.
As the virus gets worse dogs will become disoriented, hypersensitive and loss of appetite will occur. Another well known symptom is foaming of the mouth, seizures will take place around this time before sudden death.
Does all dog have rabies?
Not all dogs have rabies. How dogs get rabies symptoms vary but rabies is transmitted through saliva and being bitten by the infected. Wild and stray animals mostly likely have rabies.
Rabies is not airborne so you don’t have to worry if your dog comes close to a potentially rabid animal just as long as your dog is not scratched or bitten.
Rabies can be transmitted from mother to pup during birth. Many young dogs that have the rabies virus have caught it from their mother.
Can rabies be cured in dogs?
Unfortunately, rabies can not be cured in dogs. How a dog gets rabies does not matter once the symptoms have been developed. It can only be tested once the dog is deceased.
To prevent your dog from getting rabies you will have to get them vaccines every 1-3 years. Check with your vet to be certain. In many states, the law requires you to have your pet get the rabies vaccine every year.
If a dog is behind on the vaccine it would be at a high risk of being exposed to the virus. A dog may get quarantined or even put down if it has been bitten or bitten a human if it has not gotten the vaccine.
The vaccine may cause a few side effects depending on your dog. The side effects include swelling where the vaccine was taken. A slight fever and a slight decrease in the activity level of your dog.
If this continues for more than a couple of days contact your vet. More serious symptoms include hives, vomiting, difficulty with breathing, and your dog collapsing. If this occurs take your back to the vet as soon as possible.
Can a small scratch cause rabies?
It is rare but possible for a dog to get rabies from a small scratch. How dogs get rabies is by being bitten. If a rabid animal wound or scratches your dog this could transfer the virus. Is your dog suddenly barking at night out of pain?
To check there is a possibility your dog may have rabies have them checked by a vet and look out for symptoms such as their uncontrollable temper. If this does occur prevent yourself or anyone else from getting bitten and take your dog to the vet.
Your dog can also come into contact with the virus unknowingly if left unsupervised if this ever occurs and your dog has been injured by another animal wash the wound and contact your vet.
Can you get rabies from a dog licking your mouth?
Rabies is transmitted through saliva, being bitten, or scratches. If a dog that has rabies has licked in your mouth seek medical attention immediately. You should also wash your mouth with water instantly.
When you contact your doctor you will be given post exposure prophylaxis (PEP) also knows as the rabies vaccine. The vaccine is very effective if treated immediately. If not the virus will develop rapidly.
If you have also been bitten by a dog without a rabies shot it is advised that you do get the bitten location checked by a medical professional.
Is rabies painful for dogs?
Rabies is very painful for dogs. How the dogs get rabies is also a factor that can contribute to the pain. If they were bitten the location would become irritated and tingly.
This would increase the level of pain for the dog as this irritation will only cause physical pain and get worse.
How does a rabid dog behave?
When a dog gets rabies they tend to be very irritable and vicious when infected. Excited and playful dogs will become more docile. In the beginning, your dog would try to bring your attention to its bitten location.
Lastly, they will start drooling uncontrollably this happens because the production of saliva increases, and the throat swells which causes a dog to the inability to swallow.
The dog will then begin to foam at the mouth before dying suddenly. All these symptoms would contribute to the behavior of a dog. The longer the canine has been infected the more vicious and unpredictable their behavior becomes.
How do you know if a dog has rabies after biting?
If your dog has been bitten take them to the vet whether or not you know if rabies viruses have been transmitted. You will notice your dog bringing attention to the bitten location.
It would cause them irritation and their behavior will begin to change. If your dog begins to act this way this may be an indicator of how your dog got rabies.
The only way to test for rabies is by examining the brain tissue for rabies after the animal is deceased. If there is a possibility that your dog could have rabies you will have to quarantine your dog for 10 days.
Depending on how your dog got rabies the symptoms can develop in just a few days. If your dog has not been vaccinated but has been biting, the dog may need to quarantine for a long period of time.
After six months if the dog has not shown any symptoms it most likely does not have rabies.
Can a dog still get rabies even if he got vaccinated?
It is highly unlikely. Although there have been some cases of dogs contracting the vaccine it is unlikely that this would happen to your dog.
If a vaccinated can dog get rabies it could be the vaccine has worn out and they are actually not vaccinated. Make sure you keep up to date with your dogs’ vaccinations and keep them away from wide or stray animals. This will keep them protected.
If your dog is ever bitten contact your vet so they can treat the wound effectively. How dogs get rabies vaccination is not that different from any other animal.
They will receive an injection, this injection may cause a few minor side effects that will subside after a day or two.
How long does it take for rabies to kill a dog?
The rabies symptoms develop very quickly and the infected dog will die a sudden death. Depending on how a dog got rabies the incubation period can vary from just a few days up to six months.
How long a dog lives after being infected depends on your dog. The longer a dog lives with this virus the more suffering the dog will endure as the virus is prolonged.
How can you prevent rabies in dogs?
We’ve seen how do dogs get rabies in detail. Now let’s see how to prevent it.
To prevent your dog from getting the rabies virus always keep their vaccines up to date. The rabies vaccine is very effective on dogs so keeping them vaccinated would save their lives.
In some areas of the world, a vaccine is required every year. In many states, the vaccine can be taken every 3 years. The 3-year vaccine does not harm your dog.
Depending on the brand of the vaccine, the one-year vaccines last up to 3 years some states make them legal for the year taken.
Keeping food and other items that would attract wild animals into your area increases the risk of an animal with rabies coming close to you or your dog. Many other animals such as cats, raccoons, and foxes carry the rabies virus.
Why is there no cure for rabies?
Rabies uses a multitude strategies to keep away from counter attacks through immune system. The virus also hides from anti-viral drugs. It strategically uses the blood-brain-barrier to guard itself after entering the brain.
Blood-brain-barrier prevents large molecules and cells from entering into the brain. During the brain infection, barrier permeability may increase, allowing antibodies and immune cells to get the infection cleared.
No matter how your dog gets rabies it is fatal once the symptoms appear. If your dog has been bitten or starts behaving un-usual you should seek medical attention as soon as possible.