Self-management

Prevention

To reduce your risk of coming in contact with rabid animals:

  • Vaccinate your pets. Cats, dogs and ferrets can be vaccinated against rabies. Ask your veterinarian how often your pets should be vaccinated.
  • Keep your pets confined. Keep your pets inside and supervise them when outside. This will help keep your pets from coming in contact with wild animals.
  • Protect small pets from predators. Keep rabbits and other small pets, such as guinea pigs, inside or in protected cages so that they are safe from wild animals. These small pets can't be vaccinated against rabies.
  • Report stray animals to local authorities. Call your local animal control officials or other local law enforcement to report stray dogs and cats.
  • Don't approach wild animals. Wild animals with rabies may seem unafraid of people. It's not normal for a wild animal to be friendly with people, so stay away from any animal that seems unafraid.
  • Keep bats out of your home. Seal any cracks and gaps where bats can enter your home. If you know you have bats in your home, work with a local expert to find ways to keep bats out.
  • Consider the rabies vaccine if you're traveling. If you're traveling to a country where rabies is common and you'll be there for an extended period of time, ask your doctor whether you should receive the rabies vaccine.

    This includes traveling to remote areas where medical care is difficult to find.

Nov. 04, 2016
References
  1. Ferri FF. Rabies. In: Ferri's Clinical Advisor 2017. Philadelphia, Pa.: Elsevier; 2017. https://www.clinicalkey.com. Accessed Aug. 24, 2016.
  2. Longo DL, et al., eds. Rabies and other rhabdovirus infections. In: Harrison's Principles of Internal Medicine. 19th ed. New York, N.Y.: McGraw-Hill Education; 2015. http://accessmedicine.com. Accessed Aug. 24, 2016.
  3. AskMayoExpert. Rabies. Rochester, Minn.: Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research; 2015.
  4. Rabies. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. http://www.cdc.gov/rabies/. Accessed Aug. 24, 2016.
  5. Papadakis MA, et al., eds. Viral and rickettsial infections. In: Current Medical Diagnosis & Treatment 2017. 56th ed. New York, N.Y.: The McGraw-Hill Companies; 2017. http://www.accessmedicine.com. Accessed Aug. 24, 2016.
  6. Rabies vaccine information statements. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. http://www.cdc.gov/vaccines/hcp/vis/vis-statements/rabies.html. Accessed Aug. 24, 2016.