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Hydrophobia, Lyssa, Mad Dog, Le Rage, Tollwut

You Should be extra caution in diagnosing rabies.


  • A virus-caused disease of all warm-blooded animals and man, rabies is distributed over most of the world, except for those countries where it has been eradicated.
  • The virus is in the saliva of the rabid animal and is most commonly transmitted by its bite.
  • Rabies also can be contracted when saliva from an infected animal enters an open wound (for example, when licked).


  • Symptoms include confusion, depression, loss of milk production, and loss of appetite.
  • Many infected animals may chew on foreign objects such as wood or rocks.
  • They may not be able to swallow, and saliva or water will drool from their mouth.
  • Hydrophobia or “fear of water” is not a symptom of rabies in animals.
  • Infected goats may or may not bleat, but, if they do, it will be usually low and off-key. Also, the eyes will “stare” from dilated pupils.


  • The virus has been transmitted to humans from bats in caves, probably by breathing droplets.
  • The bite of the vampire bat is a common method of transmission. The incubation period for rabies can be very long, up to 10 months or so. It is usually about 2 weeks.
  • Rabies is always fatal. It is not commonly seen in domesticated animals raised for food, and in most cases they do not readily transmit it since they do not normally bite for self-production.


  • There is no effective treatment after symptoms develop.


  • Preventive treatment for humans is practiced immediately after exposure. This is not practical in animals, which are usually destroyed.
  • There are several vaccines available for animals. These are especially useful on South America where vampire bats are common and primary spreaders of rabies.
  • Never use a vaccine on an animal for which it is not specifically intended.


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