Any responsible pet owner is well aware of the importance of annual rabies vaccines to keep their pets safe from this highly contagious and deadly virus. Many states also require that pet owners keep their pets updated with rabies vaccines in order to protect its citizens.
Rabies is one of the few diseases that can be easily spread from animal to human. And while it is of utmost importance that pet owners protect their animals from rabies so they do not lose the animal itself, it is even more important that they vaccinate in order to protect any people that may come into contact with their pet.
What exactly is Rabies?
Rabies is a viral infection that attacks the central nervous system in warm-blooded animals. Humans contract the disease when an infected animal bites them and its saliva comes into contact with the human’s blood.
Rabies cause acute encephalitis which is inflammation of the brain.
Once the person contracts rabies from an animal, it may take anywhere from a week to months before any signs of the disease are seen. It is important to note that once signs or symptoms of the disease occur, there is no cure. Rabies treatment injections must be given immediately post infection in order to fight off the disease. This is why if a person is bitten by an animal which they are not sure may or may not have had rabies; they must always go through the rabies preventative treatment process.
Symptoms of Rabies
Rabies symptoms in humans and animals have some cross over as well as some distinct features. There are different stages in the development of rabies. Symptoms start out relatively benign in both animals and humans.
Rabies symptoms in animals:
o Subtle changes in behavior
o Chewing at bite site
o Loss of appetite
o Change in bark or call
o Craving to eat anything
o Dilated pupils
o Erratic behavior
o Extreme aggression
o No fear of enemies or dangers
o Trembling and muscle in coordination
o Appearance of choking
o Inability to swallow
Rabies symptoms in humans:
o Flu-like symptoms
o Cerebral dysfunction
o Abnormal behavior
o Inability to speak or swallow
o Paralyzed jaw and throat
For more information on rabies and irresponsible pet owners, visit the website of the Iowa personal injury lawyers of LaMarca & Landry, P.C.