There is No Cure for Rabies
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Although rabies is less common in domestic dogs and cats than it used to be, it is still possible to become infected with this lethal virus. Veterinary vaccinations have drastically reduced infections in dogs and cats, but exposure to strays or visiting a foreign country where animals are not routinely vaccinated could result in your becoming exposed to the virus. If you are bitten by an animal, quickly flush the area with generous amounts of soap and water. A vaccination process can be provided to you immediately after you have a bite. However, once a person has symptoms of rabies, there is no cure for rabies.
Becoming Infected with Rabies
Rabies is a deadly virus that is transmitted through saliva. It is carried by animals around the world, including bats, coyotes, raccoons, foxes, and skunks. In North America, most dogs are vaccinated against rabies, but stray dogs or cats might pick it up from a wild animal. When an animal is infected with the rabies virus, it becomes aggressive and more likely to bite, which is exactly how the virus is transmitted from animal to animal and animal to person. If you are ever bitten by a dog, it is important to seek treatment right away. You may also want to talk to an accident attorney in Las Vegas to discuss the legal ramifications of such an event. If possible, the dog should be captured so that it can be tested for the presence of the rabies virus.
Understanding Dog Bites
Dog bites can transmit a wide variety of bacteria and viruses. Even pet dogs may bite if they feel threatened or if they have become sick. Viruses such as rabies infect the animal’s brain, causing the dog to behave in ways that are out of character. Unlike bacterial infections of the skin that start to cause symptoms such as fever, swelling, redness, and pus, a dog bite that transmits the rabies virus will not be so obvious. Even if the bite seems minor, it is important to visit a health clinic or emergency room so that the bite can be examined. Dogs that bite should be captured by the animal control or dog warden service. They will be quarantined until proof of rabies vaccination is provided. If the dog is a stray, it may be euthanized so that veterinary pathologists can necropsy the animal and test it for rabies.
Getting Treatment for Rabies
As soon as possible, report your bite to health authorities and visit the emergency room for treatment. Once symptoms of rabies are evident, the disease is nearly always fatal. However, doctors can give you a series of rabies vaccinations immediately after a bite. These treatments may prevent the virus from taking hold in your body. The rabies shots consist of an initial fast-acting shot that should be administered within hours of the bite. This shot is injected close to the location of the bite. Over the next two weeks, you will receive four additional shots of the rabies vaccine.
Eliminating the Rabies Virus
The injections you receive help your body to fight off the rabies virus. The shots contain antigens that activate your immune system so that it can recognize the rabies virus if it was introduced to your body through the bite. By getting these vaccines as soon as possible after a bite from a potentially infected animal, you have the best chance at avoiding infection from rabies.
When possible, capture the animal that has bitten you if you can do so without further injury. Avoid any head trauma to the animal because this could make it difficult for pathologists to check it for rabies infection. Whether or not the animal can be captured, you should still receive the series of shots for vaccination against rabies virus.
“There is No Cure for Rabies – a Dangerous Lethal Virus”
Guest Writer Bio: Rachelle Wilber is a freelance writer living in the San Diego, California area. She graduated from San Diego State University with her Bachelor’s Degree in Journalism and Media Studies. Rachelle tries to find an interest in all topics and themes, which prompts her writing. When she isn’t on her porch writing in the sun, you can find her shopping, at the beach, or at the gym. Follow Rachelle on Twitter and Facebook
Other Articles by Rachelle Wilber:
- Teaching Your Dog Who is Alpha, Obedience Training
- 5 Important Items Dog Owners Always Forget About
- Famous American Pet Toy Inventions Through History
- Infected Dog Bite: How to Properly Care for a Festering Wound
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