What is Rabies?

Rabies is a viral disease of mammals, usually occurring among wild animals such as raccoons, skunks, bats, and foxes. The rabies virus travels from the site of the bite up through the nerves until it reaches the brain, causing encephalopathy and ultimately death.

How can rabies be prevented?

Make certain that all owned dogs and cats are regularly vaccinated for rabies by a veterinarian. Teach children not to approach or play with wild or stray domestic animals of any kind. Tell them that even though a baby skunk or raccoon may look cute, it can spread very serious diseases. Love your own, leave other animals alone is a good principle for children to learn.
The rabies pre-exposure vaccine regimen is recommended for persons such as rabies research and laboratory workers, spelunkers, veterinarians, veterinary technicians, veterinary students, kennel workers, animal control and wildlife personnel, and taxidermists.

People traveling to parts of the world where canine rabies is endemic should also consider the vaccine.

Find fact sheets, FAQ, and more information concerning rabies here.

Learn what should be done when a potentially rabid animal bites someone.

At the bottom of this webpage, additional information about rabies can be found.