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How can you catch rabies from a dog?

What is rabies in dogs

But first it is necessary to describe what rabies is in dogs. Many breeders have heard about this disease, but do not know about its essence and causative agent. So, this pathology is viral. The causative agent. Rabies virus, belongs to the family Rhabdoviridae.

The main danger of the virus is the encephalitis it causes, as well as the craving of the affected animal for aggression. Transmission is carried out by bites (the virus infects the salivary glands and replicates there).

Immediately after entering the wound, the pathogen begins to move towards the nearest nerve trunks. From there, the virus “creeps” towards the cerebral cortex. All this leads to severe neurological disorders, which, in turn, cause both the aggressive behavior of the animal and its subsequent death.

Interesting! The Latin name of the disease can be literally translated as “demonic possession.” Interestingly, the ancient Greek term has the same origin. It is easy to understand that the disease has been known to mankind for a very long time.

In Europe, the first documented descriptions of rabies epidemics among dogs and wild animals (mainly wolves and foxes) date back to the beginning of the 11th century. However, ancient Greek and Roman scientists also wrote about them, but there is not too much evidence of those years. Fortunately, for all its danger, the rabies virus is not very stable in the environment:

  • When boiled, it dies almost instantly. The same applies to steaming (but in this case it takes at least two minutes).
  • The pathogen can withstand direct sunlight for a maximum of five minutes.
  • Ethyl alcohol, chlorine-based disinfectants, and other standard disinfectants also kill the virus in minutes.

But! The virus is quite resistant to phenols often used for disinfection. The required exposure time is at least half an hour, but for reliability it is better to withstand one hour. In addition, the virus is very resistant to low temperatures: being frozen even in an ordinary household refrigerator, it is able to maintain full viability for several years.

In addition, the rabies virus has another specific feature that other pathogens do not have. We are talking about its ability to “conserve” in the tissues of the host’s rotting brain (deceased, of course). The record term is three years. So you should not deal with the collection and disposal of dead animals’ corpses without the appropriate equipment.

How can you get rabies from a dog: ways and means

Despite all the successes of medical infectious disease specialists and epidemiologists, as well as veterinarians, rabies remains a deadly, incurable disease to this day. Therefore, every breeder should know how and under what conditions it is possible to contract rabies from a dog.

catch, rabies

Incubation period

However, rabies has another feature that we did not talk about above. This is the incubation period of the disease. If in “decent” diseases the incubation period is more or less the same in all cases, then in this situation it is extremely variable.

The standard time for the first symptoms of rabies to appear is two to three weeks. Sometimes it can stretch up to one month. But in practice, all these deadlines are not always met. Sometimes the first symptoms in a sick animal may appear as early as a day after infection, but there are a couple of documented cases where the clinical picture developed. three years after the bite! What is the reason?

Such a variety of timing of the incubation period is associated with the characteristics of the spread of the virus in the host’s body. As we said above, nerve fibers are the “highways” for the rabies virus. The maximum speed of movement along them is three millimeters per hour (approximately). Since there are no cells of the immune system in the nervous tissue itself, nothing can prevent the pathogen.

Important! If the bite wound is near the neck, ear, or other organs near the brain, symptoms can appear very quickly. If a person or animal got a bite in the leg (hind paw), the virus will not be able to quickly get to the central nervous system.

But! Although we said that there are no cells of the immune system in the nerve fibers, certain obstacles in the path of the pathogen can still arise. We are talking about various cicatricial ties, injuries, etc. In some cases, even foci of inflammation can seriously slow down the development of the disease.

In particular, a person who fell ill with rabies three years after the bite had a severely injured arm (with the formation of many scars). It was through them that the virus made its way (unfortunately, he succeeded).

Ways of infection: myths and facts

Note that the only proven route of infection is the bite of a sick dog, or the ingestion of the saliva of an infected animal on the skin that has a violation of integrity (wounds, scratches). The problem is that, even among experienced breeders, there are a lot of misguided rumors constantly circulating. Because of them, animal lovers think that the pathways of infection can be much more varied.

Thus, it is widely believed that it is possible to infect animals by alimentary means (i.e., by consuming contaminated food and water). But in reality it is not so (not quite so). Scientists have repeatedly tried to recreate pure alimentary contamination in the laboratory, but have not succeeded. Simply put, even if you eat the meat of a sick animal, the dog will not get sick. But nevertheless, a certain possibility of infection remains in this case.

Everything You Should Know About Rabies

We are talking about stray dogs that can eat the brains of a deceased relative. Accordingly, for this they will need to gnaw the skull of the deceased host. During this unappetizing process, the dog will almost inevitably damage the mucous membranes in the oral cavity. A virus may well penetrate through these wounds, which, as we already wrote, has the ability to persist for a long time in the tissues of the brain.

Another common misconception is the opinion about the possibility of airborne contamination. Allegedly, a person or an animal can get sick just by being in the same room with a sick rabies carrier.

It is interesting that, experimentally, scientists actually managed to infect animals. But for this they needed an aerosol with an extremely large m of the virus, and the experimental individuals had to be kept in a closed room for several hours. So in practice, this method of infection is extremely unrealistic.

The air exhaled by a sick animal contains extremely few units of the pathogen, and therefore an animal or a person cannot be infected in this way. In addition, we have already written about the instability of the pathogen in the external environment.

How to recognize a sick dog

And now it is necessary to talk about how to recognize a sick dog. This can be done based on a combination of clinical signs:

  • At first, the animal becomes unusually nervous, agitated, demonstrates strange behavior in other ways. Some dogs, on the other hand, become very lethargic.
  • Then the sick pet shows signs of hydrophobia (hydrophobia). It is interesting that at first the dog can still drink, but already physically cannot stand the sounds of pouring water.
  • Then. “classic” rabies. The animal develops muscle paralysis in the larynx and neck, which causes the lower jaw to drop. Because of this, the sick dog is constantly salivating. At the same time, the dog shows the first signs of aggression towards everyone around him.
  • In the last stages of the disease, complete paralysis develops. A sick animal dies about a week after the first symptoms appear (but variations are possible).

How rabies can be transmitted

Rabies is an infectious disease.

In medicine, it is also called hydrophobia or hydrophobia. As a result of the penetration of the virus in humans and animals, inflammation of the membranes of the brain develops.

The viral component is contained in the patient’s saliva. Penetration into the blood is carried out during a bite with mechanical damage to the epidermis.

Possible methods of animal-to-human transmission of the disease include:

  • penetration of the salivary fluid of the infected into the oral mucosa, respiratory system, vision, open wounds;
  • scratches caused by the claws of infected animals;
  • cutting or cleaning the carcass of an infected animal without personal protective equipment (the virus does not die for a long time after the death of the animal and can penetrate through scratches or wounds to a healthy person).

According to medical data, cases of transmission by airborne droplets are known, during pregnancy through the placenta.

Under the microscope rabies virus

Several factors have a significant impact on the likelihood of infection.

  • Localization of the bite. Dangerous areas include the neck, face and head. Less risk of infection from biting limbs.
  • Features of the bite. Transmission is more likely with exposed skin than with a bite through clothing.
  • Kind of animal. The bite of a large individual (especially a wolf) is more dangerous than an attack of a small animal (rodent).

Between animals transmitted by direct attack with a bite.

Rabies: how is transmitted to humans

The name of the disease in question comes from the word “demon”. This is due to the fact that in ancient times people believed that the cause of this disease was the possession of an animal or person by evil spirits. By the way, the Latin name of the aforementioned disease. “rabies” has the same meaning.

So what is rabies? How is this disease transmitted? Experts report that the causative agent of this disease is transmitted to humans through saliva when bitten by sick animals. Further, the virus spreads along the nerve fibers and reaches the salivary glands, brain cells, bulbar centers and the hippocampus. By hitting them, it causes grievous violations.

Scientific studies have shown that the rabies virus is contained in the saliva of an animal during bouts of rage and 2 days before any symptoms of the disease appear. However, there have been cases when even 9-14 days before the appearance of signs in an animal, infection has already occurred from it.

How can you catch rabies from a dog?

What is rabies? How is this disease transmitted? You will find the answers to the questions posed below. We will also tell you about the manifestations of this disease, its prevention and treatment.

Is it possible to get infected from a person

Rabies is rarely transmitted from person to person. This can only happen if, in a fit of rage, the patient attacks a healthy person, as a result of which his saliva gets on the skin of the latter.

There is also a small chance of infection by inhalation of aerosols, which contain viral particles of rabies.

Despite popular belief, the causative agent of the disease in question cannot pass to humans when eating the raw meat of infected animals.

How rabies manifests itself

Experts identify 3 main stages of the disease in question.

This period usually lasts 1-3 days and is manifested by headache, fever, loss of appetite and fatigue. An infected person has neuralgia along the nerves that are close to the site of the bite. Also in this area, there is an increased sensitivity of the skin and slight twitching of muscle tissues.

This stage lasts about 5-7 days. It is manifested by temporary bouts of excessive excitement (psychomotor), and is also expressed by a sharp hypersensitivity to even minor stimuli of the sensory organs (for example, to bright light, various sounds, noise, etc.).

Patients become very violent and aggressive. They develop hallucinations, feelings of fear, delirium, paresis, convulsions, and muscle paralysis. In addition, the stage of arousal is accompanied by fever and body temperature up to 40 degrees. In the course of the development of the disease, seizures are observed more and more often, and the interictal periods are significantly shortened.

At this stage, symptoms of cranial nerve damage (including paresis of the facial nerve, diplopia, paresis of the facial muscles) are added to all of the above signs. There is also paralysis of the eye muscles and impaired swallowing reflexes.

Drooling together with a disturbed swallowing process leads to the appearance of foam in the mouth. This is a common feature for all people with rabies.

It should also be noted that in half of the cases in infected people and animals, hydrophobia is noted. When drinking fluid, patients experience involuntary and sharp contractions of the diaphragm, as well as other respiratory muscles.

The duration of the disease under consideration is 50-55 days. Sometimes this period can be shortened to two weeks. Usually death of an animal or person occurs due to respiratory arrest due to damage to the respiratory system.

The incubation period of the dog

Rabies is a viral disease associated with inflammation of the brain.

The incubation period of the disease directly depends on:

  • the size of the infected;
  • places and depths of the bite;
  • health status of the bitten.
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In children, the disease develops in a shorter time than in adults. The development of the virus occurs faster in the case of damage to the neck, face, head. Accordingly, with bites of limbs, the incubation period increases.

The incubation period for human infection is up to 3 months. Head wounds significantly accelerate the development of the disease. Cases have been recorded when symptoms manifested themselves as early as a week after the attack. When limbs are affected, the virus may not appear until 1 year. There have been cases when the disease went into the active stage after 2-3 years.

At the moment, the fact that the virus has been dormant for 6 years is known. It was recorded by an emigrant who arrived in America from the Philippines.

The incubation period can be short (several days), and it can be quite long. several months

In animals, the timing of the development of the disease slightly differs from that in humans. The incubation period is 10 to 21 days. With shallow lesions and good immunity of adults, symptoms appear after 5-9 months.

It is only possible to alleviate the patient’s condition. The disease is transferred when the epidermis is injured and salivary fluid penetrates the surface of the wound. In other cases, the probability of spread is minimal. Specialist assistance and vaccinations can prevent the development of the disease.

Despite all the successes of medical infectious disease specialists and epidemiologists, as well as veterinarians, rabies remains a deadly, incurable disease to this day. Therefore, every breeder should know how and under what conditions it is possible to contract rabies from a dog.

Human transmission of the virus

According to numerous studies, infection from an infected person is practically impossible. This fact is due to m virus in saliva. Rabies is not spread by air, blood, or simple contact.

Transmission is also possible when salivary fluid gets on damaged human skin. Science knows a single case of infection during corneal transplantation of an infected healthy patient.

Rabies is caused in warm-blooded animals by a virus that enters the body when bitten by a sick animal.

In practice, such cases are rare. For this reason, it is believed that interaction with sick people does not pose an epidemiological hazard. A similar situation is with pets who have been in contact with sick people. A human pet can only become infected if bitten with drooling.

The most dangerous animal bites

The case of rabies after a bite in humans is not very common. But even without the manifestation of any signs of the disease, it is imperative to make a preventive vaccination. After all, absolutely all bitten people are at risk of infection.

Few people know, but the danger of inflicted bites can depend on several factors, including:

  • Locations. The most dangerous are bites in the neck and head. From these places, the rabies virus is able to quickly migrate to the brain, as a result of which its incubation period, as well as the first phase of the disease, pass almost instantly.
  • Features of the bite. In the event that the carriers of rabies have bitten a person on a bare part of the body, then the possibility of contracting the virus is much higher than when bitten through clothing. By the way, the latter is able to delay the pathogen.
  • The kind of animal. The most dangerous for humans are bites of wolves.

It should also be noted that in addition to bites, infection with the virus in question can occur in another way. For example, there are cases of transmission of the pathogen when a dog licked a person’s skin, which had fresh wounds and scratches.

Another possible route of infection is the autopsy of animals or people who have died of rabies.

Quiet, atypical form

If the infection in a dog is mild, the manic stage does not appear. The pet looks depressed, apathetic. The dog does not react to external stimuli, does not show aggression, does not respond to the commands of the owner, his nickname. Death occurs due to paralysis of the respiratory center.

The atypical form is manifested by nervous disorders of varying degrees of intensity, disorders of digestive functions. Dogs develop gastritis, gastroenteritis, bloody diarrhea. The animals are tormented by exhausting vomiting and bouts of nausea. Dogs lose weight quickly, look emaciated, become unmanageable and die, usually after a few weeks.

The only self-healing form of infection is the abortive form of hydrophobia. The disease begins suddenly and just as suddenly passes. This phenomenon is not fully understood.

How does infection occur, ways of infection

Dogs can become infected with a fatal infection, regardless of breed, age. As a rule, infection occurs by contact, only through bites. The highest concentration of the virus is found in the saliva of infected individuals. The pathogen penetrates through mucous membranes, damaged epidermis, microcracks, wounds, and other imperfections in the skin. The ingress of saliva through a scratch, open wounds can also provoke infection. Torn wounds in the area of ​​the muzzle, neck, withers are considered especially dangerous.

Important! Without a bite, an aerogenic, alimentary method, it is impossible to become infected with hydrophobia. Therefore, infection is possible if the domestic dog had contact with stray relatives, was bitten by predatory animals.

In apparently healthy, but already infected dogs, the pathogen appears in the saliva about seven to ten days before the onset of characteristic symptoms, while if the pet has strong immunity, the symptoms will appear later, two to three weeks after infection.

The risk group includes small puppies with incompletely formed immunity, young dogs with weakened resistance, low immune potential, exhausted animals, sick with parasitic, viral and bacterial infections.

After a bite, the rhabdovirus remains in the wound for several days, after which it moves along neurotropic centrifugal pathways at a speed of 3 mm / h to the neurons of the brain, spinal cord, cellular structures of the salivary glands, where it replicates and multiplies.

The rate of infection depends on:

  • age;
  • bite sites;
  • localization, concentration of rhabdovirus in the body;
  • serotype;
  • immune potential.

It has been noted that young pet dogs show symptoms more quickly after infection than older pets.

Exuberant form

With this form of infection, development occurs in several successive stages. Allocate:

  • prodromal;
  • manic;
  • paralytic.

At the beginning of the development of the infectious process, attentive owners may notice changes in the behavior of the pet. Dogs become inactive, reluctant to carry out elementary commands, refuse to go for a walk, to take part in active games. Animals try to hide in secluded places in the house, apartment. The duration of the prodromal stage of rabies is two to four days.

After the infection has passed into a manic stage, the symptoms appear more intensely, clearly. Dogs that had a good disposition, show aggression, rush to people, their relatives, pets. Aggression gives way to oppression, bouts of affection.

Among the characteristic symptoms for this stage are:

  • inadequate response to external stimuli;
  • fear of water, loud sounds, bright light;
  • panic attacks;
  • obvious attacks of a nervous breakdown;
  • refusal of water, food;
  • dilated pupils;
  • salivation;
  • sudden weight loss;
  • violation of respiratory function, heart rhythm;
  • deterioration of the coat.

Domestic dogs are severely emaciated, often run away from home, running tens of kilometers without stopping, and begin to eat inedible objects. The timbre of the voice changes. The barking becomes intermittent, hoarse. Body temperature is normal or slightly lowered. The duration of the arousal stage does not exceed five days.

With the transition of the infection to the paralytic stage, which lasts for three to four days, the disease manifests itself with fever, tremors, and muscle spasms. The lower jaw drops. Saliva flows profusely from the mouth. The swallowing reflex is completely absent. The slightest noise of water, sharp sounds cause panic. At the end of the disease, paralysis of the respiratory center, pharynx, larynx, limbs, body is noted. The dog falls into a coma, dies due to respiratory arrest.

Treatment, diagnostics

When making a diagnosis of rabies, there are no particular difficulties. A comprehensive examination of animals, a series of laboratory, biological studies, samples on laboratory animals are carried out. The dog takes the cerebrospinal fluid for analysis. When making a diagnosis, the epizootic situation is taken into account, anamnesis data.

The fastest method for diagnosing rabies is ELISA (enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay). Differential diagnosis is mandatory, since the symptoms of this infection are similar to Aujeszky’s disease, the nervous form of the plague of carnivores, meningoencephalitis.

Important! If your pet has had contact with predatory animals, stray relatives, we recommend taking the dog to a veterinary hospital.

The animal will be quarantined in a separate box. For two weeks, he will be constantly monitored by veterinarians. During this period, no one is allowed to the animal, including the owners. If the diagnosis is confirmed, the dog is euthanized.

Unfortunately, rabies is an incurable disease of a viral and infectious nature. There is no curative therapy, so owners must do their best to protect their loyal friend from rabies virus infection.

How a dog can get rabies: all possible routes

Rabies is one of the most dangerous infectious and viral diseases for all types of warm-blooded animals. With this disease, the peripheral, central nervous system is affected, systemic failures in the work of other internal organs are noted. Infection is inevitably fatal.

Rabies belongs to the category of zooanthroponosis, therefore it poses a danger to health and human life. How can a dog get rabies? What are the first symptoms of the disease in animals? Can pets be protected from rabies??

Symptoms, manifestations of infection

The main target of rhabdovirus is the cellular structures of the brain and spinal cord. having penetrated into a favorable environment for itself, the pathogen destroys neurons, nervous tissues, mucous membranes, which leads to disruptions in the functioning of the central nervous system, irreversible processes in the body.

Important! In dogs, hydrophobia occurs in violent, quiet, abortive, atypical forms. Rhabdovirus affects not only the nervous, but also the immune, endocrine systems.

The incubation period, if the dog is infected with a deadly virus, ranges from several days to several weeks. The infection is characterized by a fulminant, acute, subacute, less often chronic course. In the chronic form, animals are latent bacteria carriers for a long period of time.

Description of the causative agent

A deadly infection is provoked by a specific filterable neurotropic RNA-containing virus of the rhabdovirus family that is resistant to high temperatures, chemical disinfectants. The pathogen is widespread in the environment, therefore, outbreaks of infection are recorded in all countries of the world. Inactivated at low temperatures.

Important! Rhabdovirus infects the central nervous system of domestic, wild animals and humans. The disease is incurable and always fatal. Hydrophobia is registered all over the world, in our country.

Carnivorous predators are spreading the deadly infection. Wolves, foxes, raccoons, jackals, hedgehogs, coyotes, rodents carry rhabdoviruses, release the pathogen into the environment.

Prevention of hydrophobia

The only reliable way to protect your beloved dog from rabies is timely preventive vaccination. Dogs can be vaccinated starting from four months or after the change of milk teeth. For immunization, complex polyvaccines or special anti-rabies monovaccines (Nobivac Rabies) of domestic and foreign production are used.

The vaccinated dog receives, along with the vaccine, specific immune protection, becomes less susceptible to a deadly infection. In the body of animals, about a month after vaccination, protective antibodies are produced.

Depending on the injected drug (vaccine), revaccination is carried out in a year. In some cases, the immune defense lasts up to three years. The veterinarian will select the optimal drug, vaccination schedule for your pet.

You should not allow the dog to come into contact with stray relatives, stray cats, rodents while walking. If you often go out into the countryside, into the forest, to hunt with a faithful pet, we recommend that you take an anti-rabies antibody titer test every year.

Closely monitor the behavior, habits, physiological state of your pet. If there is a suspicion of infection with the rabies virus, if the general condition worsens, immediately take the dog to the veterinary clinic.

From a wild animal

Wildlife-to-dog transmission of the virus is the most common type of infection when it comes to tetrapods that are allowed to walk on their own. Among the wild animal carriers that are common in the city and suburban areas, it is necessary to highlight:

  • Hedgehogs.
  • Bats.
  • Fox. statistically more than 80% of people living in disadvantaged areas contract rabies at an early age.
  • Raccoons, raccoon dogs and other wild canids.
  • Rats.

Note! Foxes and hedgehogs are often carriers, but rarely suffer from the rabies virus.

All of the above animals can be hunted by a dog. If a pet corners an infected wild animal, two scenarios are possible. The wild animal may defend itself, causing the dog to be bitten or kill the wild animal.

Can I Get Rabies if My Dog Bites Me? How to Treat Dog Bite Wound at Home? (WHO’s Information)

Not all dogs eat their prey, but if this happens and the animal has been infected, the risk of infection is very high.

Ways of infecting dogs with rabies

Because rabies is a virus that infects and multiplies in the blood, it is not easy to get infected. Without enough information, many people fear aggressive dogs and cats, considering them rabid. In fact, urban rabies is quite rare.

Wild animals that carry the virus and enter the city avoid contact with people by all available means. Infected pets, in the first stage of infection, are very shy and will attack humans only if forced.

The main routes of rabies infection are as follows:

  • Bites. the virus enters the blood of a healthy animal from the carrier’s saliva.
  • Scratches and other wounds inflicted during fights. sometimes, for infection with rabies, it is enough to get infected saliva on damaged skin.
  • Scratch caused by cats. purrs have a habit of cleaning their claws with their teeth, as a result of which saliva remains on their paws.
  • With blood transfusion from a living donor. since there is no effective method for diagnosing rabies in a living patient, infection is possible if the donor is a carrier of the virus, but the first symptoms have not yet appeared.
  • Eating an Infected Carrier. Cats and dogs that have free range can hunt small, wild animals, which in turn are often asymptomatic carriers of rabies.
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Note! The routes of human rabies infection are similar to those given above. In addition, owners of unvaccinated dogs and cats are at particular risk.

What is rabies in dogs and why is it dangerous?

Carnivore rabies is a worldwide virus that infects domestic cats, dogs, wildlife and humans. Rabies is considered one of the most terrible and dangerous viruses on the planet, since no cure has yet been invented for it.

What is rabies in dogs? The virus infects the blood, multiplies rapidly, and then destroys the tissues of the brain and spinal cord. Unfortunately, before death, under the influence of the virus, the dog becomes mentally inadequate, as a result of which it can injure others and transmit the virus to them.

The World Veterinary Association and medical professionals around the globe are confronted with cases of human rabies every year.

According to the most conservative estimates, more than 50 thousand deaths in animals and people due to infection with the rabies virus are recorded annually in the world. To prevent outbreaks and spread of the virus in the world, compulsory vaccination is practiced.

Pets are annually vaccinated with sera, which contributes to the production of antibodies and the prevention of infection, even with direct contact with the virus carrier.

To prevent rabies in wild animals, prophylactic baits should be regularly scattered near residential areas to prevent infestation. In fact, the prevention of rabies in wild animals has not been carried out for many years in almost all territories of the former CIS, which leads to an annual worsening of the situation.

From dog to dog

The transmission of the virus from dog to dog occurs in two cases:

  • Fight.
  • Mating in a stressful environment.

In the case of a fight, everything is clear, the carrier of the virus infects a healthy dog ​​with saliva. When a virus carrier bites a healthy animal, its fangs penetrate deep into the muscles along with infected saliva, after which the virus multiplies in the blood.

If your pet has a fight with a stray dog, and you suspect that it may be a carrier of the rabies virus, you should immediately contact your veterinarian.

Regularly measure your pet’s temperature and track changes in its behavior and condition. Any manifestations of a malfunction of the central nervous system indicate the possibility of infection with a virus.

Mating stray dogs in stressful environments can damage the mucous membranes. It is known that before mating, the male takes care of the bitch, as a result of which his saliva gets on the mucous membranes. If a male dog is infected with rabies, the probability of infection of the bitch is almost one hundred percent. If the rabies carrier is a female, the male may not be infected.

How a dog can get rabies

Unfortunately, rabies is very dangerous and no one is immune from it. Like any virus, rabies has an incubation period. Let’s see what rabies is in dogs and how a dog can get rabies.

From cat to dog

The rabies virus can be transmitted from cat to dog. In addition, this particular route of infection is considered the most common in urban areas. The cat becomes infected with rabies from wild rodents, which are hunted while on the free range. When grooming itself, the cat licks itself by applying infected saliva to its fur and claws.

Note! The rabies virus survives in the external environment for up to 24 hours.

The clinical picture of the development of rabies in cats is similar to that of a dog. at the second stage, the animal becomes aggressive. Aggressive, attacking cat bites and scratches the dog, as a result of which the virus enters the blood.

If your dog is attacked by a cat, do not panic, most likely, the reason is not rabies, but in a nest with kittens located somewhere nearby. Take the pet home, return to the scene, carefully search all secluded places and follow the cat if you see it.

If the cat looks healthy, washes calmly, does not try to hide in dark places. most likely, the reason for the attack is not madness.

Incubation period after exposure to rabies

After direct contact with a virus carrier, symptoms of infection do not appear immediately. The virus takes some time to multiply and affect the central nervous system. It is known that within 10 days after infection, the dog becomes an active carrier of rabies and can infect others. The rabies virus spreads through blood, saliva and crosses the placental barrier.

The incubation period can range from 14 days to 2 months. If a dog is suspected of being infected, the quarantine lasts at least 14 days, during which the animal’s well-being and behavior is strictly monitored. In the absence of symptoms indicating poor health, the quarantine is lifted.

Late onset of rabies, 4–8 weeks after infection, is most commonly seen in wild animals. Many wild animals can carry rabies all their lives, but not suffer from it. over, some wild animals that carry rabies produce healthy but already infected offspring.

These inedible fungi

It is not only bacteria and viruses that can cause dangerous diseases in dogs. Some fungi also have this ability, which, having settled on the skin of an animal, cause him terrible anxiety. But whether a fungal infection is capable of living on the human body and what exactly is worth being wary of, you still need to figure it out. So, what, which has a fungal nature, can be infected from a dog?

Mycoses are diseases in dogs, the causative agents of which are fungal flora. The most common of mycoses is considered to be lichen or mycosporia. It is him that people are most afraid of, and for good reason. You can get shingles from a dog by simply stroking a sick animal, which is often practiced by small children and ardent animal lovers.

In principle, lichen can have various forms, which differ in the causative agent of the disease (and it can be not only a fungus, but also a virus), the nature of the rash on the animal’s skin, the localization of spots and the degree of infectiousness. A characteristic symptom of lichen is considered: colored or flaky spots on the skin, which itch a lot, so the animal constantly itches and spreads the infection throughout the body, hair loss at the site of the fungus. Sometimes lichen manifests itself in the form of scabs on the skin and lightening of the ends of the hair, which ceases to shine, looks unkempt, gets lost in lumps.

The fungus that causes lichen settles primarily in the epidermal layers of the skin of a dog or cat. Separate elements can be found on the animal’s fur, especially after the dog has scratched the itchy spot. It is enough just to run your hand over the fur of a sick animal, and then touch its skin or hair, and the fungus will gladly accept the invitation to settle down in the “new home”.

In humans, the disease is called ringworm, and it is caused by zoophilic dermatophytes (a type of fungus). It is called a clipper because it really loves places on the skin covered with hairs that fall out under its influence. The incubation period of the disease, if received from an animal, is no more than a week. The risk of getting sick is higher in people with weakened immune systems or skin wounds. Caring for sick animals is also a risk factor. The treatment of lichen in animals is quite long, therefore, if the rules of hygiene are not followed, the likelihood of infection is very high. It is especially dangerous if the animal was not isolated during the treatment. In this case, fungal spores can be found for a long time on any surfaces that the sick animal has come into contact with.

What diseases can you get from a dog?

Before we start looking at the diseases that a pet or outdoor pet can give us, let’s talk about whether to blame the dog. Even we, humans, the most intelligent creatures living on the planet, do not always take care of our health, despite the fact that we have every opportunity to prevent the development of the vast majority of diseases. And dogs do not have such an opportunity, unless a person takes care and vaccinates the pet in advance. After all, a dog does not even know what danger it can bring to someone who considers it to be his best friend. Therefore, you should not blame the animal, you should think about your behavior and attitude towards it, and, of course, about what you can get infected from a dog if you do not take precautions.

But this is all lyrics, back to reality. And it is such that animals can be carriers of the same types of pathologies that people suffer from. These are infectious, parasitic and fungal diseases. In turn, infectious pathologies can be both bacterial and viral.

Bacteria and viruses

Oh, these microscopic microorganisms are capable of knocking down both humans and animals, causing the most dangerous disturbances in the body. True, not all bacteria and viruses are capable of migrating between humans and animals, and it is not always advisable for them to change their place of residence (conditions are inappropriate). Consider a few popular examples when a “canine” disease is transmitted (or not transmitted) to humans, as well as issues related to purely human viruses.

[1], [2], [3]

Numerous parasites

Yes, it is in the huge family of all kinds of parasites that the main danger of keeping pets lies, not to mention contact with homeless people. Parasites are micro and macroorganisms that live off others. We will not be distracted by the fact that there are parasites among people, but let’s talk about those parasites that live inside or on the surface of the body of humans and animals, and what parasites can be infected from a dog.

So, parasites are organisms that cannot exist for a long time outside the “host”. If you think carefully, viruses, as well as some types of bacteria and fungi, can be attributed to this group, but we are not talking about them now. We’ll talk about the larger parasites, which can be divided into 2 groups:

  • endoparasites include insects (ticks, fleas, lice) and some protozoa that can live on the skin of a dog, feeding on its blood,
  • endoparasites torment the animal from the inside, these are helminths and some types of protozoa that settle in the internal organs.

Each of the groups has a specific subgroup of parasites. Among endoparasites, these are organisms that parasitize not on the surface of the skin, but in its inner layers (for example, some types of mites). Endoparasites include those organisms that live in open cavities (nose, ears, mouth).

The richness of microflora in dogs can hardly surprise an experienced dog breeder, who probably knows the secrets of fighting its various species. But an inexperienced owner of a puppy or an adult dog, due to the lack of important knowledge and inactivity, can destroy the animal and harm himself. Those who do not have their own dogs can also suffer, but out of love for animals, a person often contacts them on the street or at a party, without thinking about the presence of parasites in a dog or cat.

What kind of parasites can be found in animals and how can one get infected from a dog? We will try to figure it out with this question now.

Viral pathologies

Since we are talking about contact with animals, we need to understand that it may not always end well. Often, when showing aggression, a dog can bite a person. And immediately the question arises, what can you get from a dog bite??

We already know about bacterial infections and the possibility of getting them during an animal bite, but what about viruses that also provoke various diseases?

  • Rabies virus or neurotropic virus. It is considered the causative agent of well-known pathology. rabies (other names: hydrophobia, hydrophobia). This is an extremely dangerous disease that cannot even be cured in animals. If the diagnosis is confirmed, the dog is euthanized.

In animals, the disease can occur in 3 forms, which differ markedly in their symptoms:

Exuberant form: At first, the dog is either sluggish and fearful, or overly affectionate and intrusive, then it becomes restless, alert, and then overly aggressive. The dog can react violently to bright light, cry, noise. After the attack comes lethargy and apathy. The dog may refuse to eat, but gnaws and gnaws on inedible objects. Drooling appears, the voice becomes hoarse, turning into a howl. The hallmark of rabies is the inability to swallow water.

Quiet form: the dog is too affectionate, all the time trying to lick the owner, then salivation and anxiety appear, the lower jaw drops, it becomes difficult to swallow, especially water.

Atypical form: signs of inflammatory pathologies of the gastrointestinal tract (gastritis or enteritis).

In animals, the incubation period can last from 5 days (in puppies) to 2 months, in isolated cases. up to a year.

The question of whether it is possible to contract rabies from a dog has long been considered irrelevant, because dogs are the main carriers of the virus. Another thing is how you can get rabies from a dog? Usually, infection occurs when an animal bites. But since the virus is contained in the saliva of a dog, which can obsessively lick the owner, the possibility of infection through lesions on the skin in the place that the animal actively licked or where it left its saliva is not excluded.

Depending on the site of the bite, the incubation period in humans lasts from 5 to 40 days, and sometimes up to 1 year. The higher the bite is located on the body, the faster the disease will develop, which usually has 3 stages:

Stage 1 (1-3 days): pulling pains, itching and inflammation at the site of the bite, temperature in the range of 37-37.3 o C, headaches, general weakness, depression, fear, sometimes hallucinations, nightmares, impaired appetite and sleep.

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Stage 2 (2-3 days): the appearance of hydrophobia (a person cannot drink, spasms in the throat arise even from the noise of water), rare convulsive breathing, cramps in the body, groundless fear from every sharp sound or movement, dilated pupils, salivation, frequent pulse, hyperhidrosis;

the person is agitated, attacks of aggression and inappropriate behavior appear (beats, bites, tears his hair, etc.), at the end of the attack, the patient becomes normal and adequate.

Stage 3 (about 1 day): impaired sensitivity, paralysis of muscles and organs, unusual calmness, temperature about 42 ° C, increased heart rate, low blood pressure. Then death comes.

Don’t be scared, because it usually doesn’t come to that. After a dog bite, a sober person will definitely go to the hospital, where he will be vaccinated (modern COCAV vaccine) on the same day. The main thing is not to delay going to the doctor. If more than 2 weeks have passed since the bite, the vaccine may not help. And the appearance of the first symptoms of the disease suggests that no treatment will help a person.

Readers may ask this unusual question: can you get rabies from a vaccinated dog? Veterinarians say that a vaccinated dog cannot get sick with rabies. It is another matter if she received the virus even before that (the incubation period can be long), and the vaccination did not have time to take effect, or was in close contact with the sick dog, so that the saliva of the infected animal remained in the mouth. As you can see, the likelihood of infection from a vaccinated dog is very, very small.

over, doctors say that getting infected from an unvaccinated domestic dog is also unlikely if the animal does not communicate with yard dogs.

  • The hepatitis virus is a microorganism from the adenovirus group. In dogs, causes infectious viral hepatitis (Rubart’s disease), which is characterized by an inflammatory process in the liver.

In animals, it manifests itself in the form of: an increase in temperature to 41 ° C, depression, loss of appetite, bouts of vomiting, diarrhea, enlargement and redness of the tonsils, the appearance of a whitish cloudy spot on the eyes, lightening of feces and darkening of urine, sometimes a yellowish tint on the skin and mucous membranes.

Young dogs usually die, and those that survive suffer liver disease.

A fair question arises, is it possible to get hepatitis from a dog? A dog can get the disease quite easily through touch, but it will be safe for humans. So the disease is terrible for the animal, but not for its owner.

  • HIV is the human immunodeficiency virus that subsequently causes AIDS. The very name of the virus suggests that this virus affects mainly people.

Can dogs get HIV? No, it can only be a short-term carrier of an infection that cannot live for a long time outside the human body.

However, according to many studies, insects can also transmit HIV. So maybe dogs can reward a person with such a dangerous disease that is absolutely safe for them.?

Let’s not sin against the truth, the probability of such an infection exists, but it is so negligible that it is simply not taken into account. How likely is it that a dog, having bitten to the blood of a patient with HIV infection, will attack a healthy person and bring infected blood into the wound? This is the chance to get infected.

  • Rotavirus or rotavirus infection (also known as intestinal or stomach flu) is a virus whose different strains cause severe symptoms in different animals, including dogs, and in humans. The main symptoms: intoxication, diarrhea, dehydration, plus all kinds of cold symptoms.

Rotavirus infection is highly contagious and has a short incubation period (up to 12 hours). It is dangerous for people with weak immunity, children and the elderly. Can a dog get rotavirus from a sick owner? Fortunately, no, because for puppies, with whom the owners are especially tinkering, the disease can be fatal (for adult dogs, rotavirus is not terrible).

In humans and dogs, the disease is caused by different strains of the virus, so transmission of the disease between them is impossible.

  • The canine distemper virus is a microorganism from the morbillivirus family that causes a disease in dogs under the funny name “distemper.” And what else can you call a disease that affects mainly young animals at the age of 3-12 months?

Distemper (plague of carnivores) is a very dangerous disease for animals that affects the respiratory system, digestive organs, skin and central nervous system. Quite often, the disease leads to the death of the dog.

Symptoms: high fever (under 40 ° C), vomiting, diarrhea, profuse purulent discharge from the nose and eyes, convulsions.

Can a person get the distemper from a dog? No, the dog plague virus is not terrible for humans, the measles virus, which also belongs to the family of morbilliviruses, is another matter. But a person carrying a virus, like a cat (she herself does not get sick), may well be if he was caring for a sick animal. In the external environment, the virus is able to survive up to 2-3 months. In this case, the owner becomes dangerous to his dog if it was not vaccinated at one time and has a sensitivity to infection.

And finally, a question that is directly related to the viral infection, which we often call the common cold. So is it possible to get a cold from a dog, because it causes the same symptoms in both humans and animals: sneezing, coughing, runny nose, watery eyes?

You should not worry about this, because, as in the case of rotavirus infection, the symptoms of the disease in humans and dogs or cats are caused by completely different viruses. So you do not need to be afraid to treat your pet for fear of getting sick yourself.


Many do not even want to remember these parasites, so many unpleasant moments can be associated with them. Not only does the insect cause unbearable itching, penetrating under the skin of an animal or a person, but it is also not so easy to remove it.

The most famous disease in humans and animals caused by a tick is scabies. True, not everyone knows that the cause of itching is a mite, and not at all uncleanliness. The association between scabies and dirt arose due to the fact that the disease is very common among homeless people. But the reason is not dirt at all, but that scabies is highly contagious. The scabies mite is a nocturnal insect, and only during this period can the female be on the surface of the skin for intercourse. Tick ​​transmission is carried out by close contact of the skin of a sick person with the body of a healthy person, especially at night, which is very popular among people without a permanent place of residence.

Now for the animals. The question of whether it is possible to get scabies from a dog has a very difficult answer. To begin with, the scabies mite has several varieties that inhabit either humans or animals. Everyone has their own preferences.

But it is also impossible to completely exclude the transmission of a dog tick to a person. If an adult or a child actively hugs an infected dog in the evening, it is possible that the female tick will try to change the environment. But this will not benefit her, since being on the human body does not allow the itch mite to completely go through the life cycle from larva to adult. In the end, both the tick and its larvae will die, so the disease will not last long.

Another type of parasite mite is demodex. The disease they cause is called demodicosis and manifests itself not so much in the form of itching (it is rather a slight tickling), as the appearance on the skin of reddish acne, redness and peeling of the skin, swelling of the eyelids.

Can you get Demodectic mange from a dog? Opinions differ on this point. On the one hand, demodex, like the scabies mite, has several varieties, depending on the animal whose body is its habitat. It would seem that a dog tick should not live on humans. But you can find many messages when a dog’s subcutaneous tick was the cause of the disease in a person.

So is it possible to get a subcutaneous tick from a dog? You can, in the same way as scabies. But be that as it may, it is safe to say that the disease will not last long. After all, the living conditions in the body of a person and an animal are completely different. A lower human body temperature will prevent ticks from actively reproducing.

Bacterial pathologies

The very name “bacterial diseases” suggests that the causative agent of the disease is a certain bacterium, a pathogenic microorganism. So the question of what can be infected from a dog can be answered with confidence: bacteria. Let’s try to figure out which bacteria are dangerous for both dogs and humans.

  • Leptospira. bacteria from the genus of spirochetes. They become the cause of such a dangerous disease of animals and people as leptospirosis. This disease can be called in different ways: canine fever, infectious jaundice, Vasiliev-Weil disease, etc. But the meaning remains the same: under the influence of leptospira, the animal begins a fever, the skin turns yellow, appetite disappears, weakness and apathy appear. If the disease is acute or lightning fast, the animal most often dies. But the disease can be chronic in nature, and some dogs can carry the infection for 3 years.

Leptospira can be found in urine, feces, milk, semen, nasal and genital secretions, as well as in exhaled air, which means it can easily get on any surfaces that a person will come into contact with, or into water. They penetrate into the human body through any damage to the skin: wounds, scratches, bites, etc. The incubation period for leptospirosis ranges from 2 to 4.5 weeks.

In humans, the disease is also manifested by chills, fever up to 40 ° C, headaches and muscle pains, redness and swelling of the face, skin rashes, urinary retention, falling blood pressure, etc.

If the disease is not treated, it gives dangerous complications: severe liver and kidney diseases with impaired functions, inflammation of the meninges and brain (meningitis and encephalitis), inflammation in the iris (iritis), etc.

  • Listeria is a gram-positive bacillus that feels great in the external environment and is not afraid of the cold, continuing to actively multiply even in a refrigerator. It is considered the causative agent of listeriosis. a disease of animals and humans.

In animals, the disease is manifested by apathy, which after 3-7 days is replaced by uncontrolled aggression. Depending on the form of the disease, the symptoms may differ: paresis of the limbs, convulsive syndrome, fever, development of mastitis in bitches, etc. If the central nervous system is affected, the animal dies.

Listeria is also found in any physiological secretions of sick animals and carriers of infection. Thus, both the dog itself and everything with which it comes into contact can become source of infection. The incubation period can be from 7 days to 1 month.

In humans, listeriosis manifests itself in the form of diarrhea, nausea with bouts of vomiting, sometimes an increase in temperature, which resembles the course of many pathologies of the gastrointestinal tract.

The disease can occur in various forms and has dangerous complications: meningitis, encephalitis, myocarditis (inflammation of the heart muscle), arthritis, osteomyelitis, pneumonia. We are talking about inflammatory processes affecting the brain, heart, joints, bones, lungs.

  • Staphylococci are gram-positive bacteria that can cause various inflammatory pathologies in both animals and humans. In animals, staphylococcal infection develops mainly against the background of other pathologies, which are accompanied by itching of the skin (dermatitis). The dog begins to actively itch, tearing the skin, where the infection gets, which can be found literally everywhere. Suppuration forms at the site of the wounds.

When asked whether it is possible to get staphylococcus from a dog, the answer is yes. But, alas, much more often people receive bacteria as a reward not from animals, but from contact with dirty objects through unwashed hands or by airborne droplets. Wounds on the skin or mucous membranes are also a risk factor.

Most often, children or elderly people, as well as those with severely weakened immunity, become infected from animals.

You can become infected from a dog with a bacterial disease by friendly contact with the animal itself, by a bite with damage to the skin, by contact with infected surfaces, But again, provided that there was a wound on the skin at the site of contact. Infection of a person is not excluded through unwashed hands.

[4], [5], [6], [7]

Lice and fleas

Many parents are faced with how many unpleasant moments lice give to a child, which can easily migrate to the head of an adult. Watching how our smaller brothers itch (and this is the main symptom of the presence of parasitic insects), and finding small insects in their fur, willy-nilly, you wonder whether it is possible to get lice from a dog?

The answer to the question will sound like this: you can get infected, but it is not dangerous, because lice in animals and in humans are completely different insects. Human lice are attracted to our blood, while dog fleas will not like it. Once on a person’s head, a flea will not linger there for a long time, and will look for opportunities to return to where the food is delicious.

The same applies to lice. small sedentary translucent parasites that can be found in the fur of animals. A change of residence from a dog to a person is fraught with the death of an insect, which simply freezes on the human body, because it has a temperature almost 2 degrees lower than that of a dog.