Any pet owner will tell you one of the scariest pet diseases caused by the bite of an infected animal, better known as rabies, attacks the central nervous system. The rabies virus fundamentally ends up attacking the brain. Whenever a person or animal is bitten by an animal already infected with rabies, the prognosis is scary. Here are some guidelines to follow as it relates to dogs or cats with rabies.
The 4-1-1: the virus is transmitted from saliva from the actual bite of a rabid wild animal, in particular usually it’s a skunk, raccoon, bat, and fox. Signs of rabies begin to develop in less than ten days. Actually, rabies cases are now more prevalent in cats than dogs since cats tend to roam more often than dogs.
So, how do you know if your pet has been infected by rabies and what can you do about it?
The initial stage lasts two to three days. Signs of this pet disease can include behavioral changes, fever, slow eye reflexes, and chewing at the bitten area.
The furious stage, lasts two to four days. During this time of rabies you may notice erratic behavior in your cat or dog including irritability, restlessness, aggression, vicious attacks on inanimate objects.
Lastly, the paralytic stage can also endure two to four days in which paralysis symptoms can develop. Paralysis of the throat and face may occur as a result of the rabies bite, causing a change in the bark, drooling with typical foaming at the mouth and a dropped jaw. These signs may be followed by depression, coma, and possibly death.
If your pet has been bitten by a rabid animal, call your veterinarian immediately for the next course of action against rabies. Hopefully your pet has already been vaccinated and if so, another rabies vaccination should be administered and he should be quarantined for three months.
However, if your dog or cat has not been vaccinated, talk to your veterinarian about options. For instance, one option instead of euthanizing your pet is a strict quarantine for six months with administering a rabies vaccination one month prior to release. The reason being is to have precautionary measures in place to ensure no one else is infected with this deadly disease.
That said, people should also avoid wild animal contact to avoid getting bitten by a wild animal, hence avoiding rabies yourself. If you see a skunk, raccoon, or fox roaming down your street in pure daylight, stay away. It’s very likely that animal sick and could very well be infected by rabies.
Overall, your cat or dog may be susceptible to rabies if it is in contact with wild animals, therefore always ensure your pet is vaccinated and try to limit its roaming factor among wild animals. If your cat or dog exhibits symptoms or rabies, contact your vet immediately.
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