Do rats carry rabies?

First, what is rabies? It is a zoonotic disease which is transmitted from one animal to another, or from animals to humans. Humans can be infected when they are bitten or have their wounds licked by a rabid animal. The virus gets to your body and attaches itself to the nerve cells and destroys your nervous system gradually. If left unattended to, rabies can cause brain damage and eventually kills you. The most common signs of rabies usually last for a few days and they include: • fever • a headache • nausea • vomiting • agitation • anxiety • confusion • hyperactivity • difficulty swallowing • excessive salivation • insomnia • hallucination • fear of water • partial paralysis Do rats carry rabies? Basically, rats are carriers of the virus. In wild population, no reports of them having rabies has been reported. A huge population has been bitten by rats but there is no rabies vaccine that has been administered to them and no deaths reported. Even the wild rats cannot transmit rabies and this has been a huge concern. Some theories explain that rats are so small and rarely survive attacks from predators like fox, hence, not living to pass it on. There is no need to get shots after rat bites although medical attention is required by the victims. Rats are believed to have dry bites. Because of these dry bites, they cannot transmit the virus to humans even if they were not just carriers. Their teeth are designed in a way that they cannot have any contact with the saliva. Rats can only transmit other diseases to both humans and pets other than rabies. Most of these diseases are only contacted when you get in contact with their urine, feces, and saliva. A very good example is the rat-bite fever. Do not assume the fact that as deadly as rabies is, it is very rare. Pets which are not vaccinated as well as rabid animals are the main causative agents. The main focus when it comes to rabies are animals like the bat, dogs, raccoon, woodchuck, coyote, and fox. In some cases, rabbits and hares are also seen to be possible transmitters. Another important factor is that rats rarely come into contact with these animals keeping them safe from the virus. Rats are not transmitters of rabies unless they are made to do it intentionally in the laboratory. BOTTOMLINE The risk of getting rabies when bitten by a rat is very low. Yes, all these rodents you see around here might be victims of rabies but they carry it at the lowest chances or rates. They are killed by the predators in the first place and do not get the chance to transmit it to other animals or humans. The truth of the matter is that we should not have it as a zero chance, the chances are just low. Anytime you are bitten by a rat, do not let rabies be your only concern. There are other fatal diseases transmitted by them. E

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