Rabies in cats – signs, symptoms, prevention and treatment

What is rabies?

Rabies is a viral disease that can be infected. all warm-blooded animals, including cats and humans, although some species have some natural resistance to the disease. At signs of rabies, this almost always leads to fatal.

Rabies in cats - signs, symptoms, prevention and treatment

Cases of rabies have been identified and described for a very long time, approximately from 2300 BC e.

How common is rabies?

The virus is found on all continents except Australia and Antarctica, and in almost all countries, with the exception of some island. In rabies-free countries, strict quarantine laws that prevent the spread of the virus.

How is rabies transmitted?

The rabies virus cannot live long outside the body of a mammal. is he can be transmitted through the saliva of infected animals and their bites. The main sources of the virus that infect humans and animals, are stray dogs, foxes, raccoons and bats.

How long does the incubation period between an infected bite last? an animal and the onset of symptoms in a cat?

The incubation period can vary from ten days to one year or longer. In cats, it is usually less than in dogs, and usually lasts 3 to 8 weeks. Death usually occurs in within ten days after the first onset of symptoms.

The rate of development of clinical symptoms depends on:

  1. Bite. The closer the bite is to the brain or spinal cord, the faster the virus reaches the nerve tissue and causes symptoms.
  2. The severity of the bite.
  3. The amount of virus in saliva during a bite. Rabies virus is not always present in the saliva of an infected animal.

What are the clinical signs of rabies?

After a bite or scratch of an infected animal, the disease goes away through three stages:

  1. Prodromal stage – characterized by a noticeable change behavior. Quiet cats can become agitated and aggressive while violent and active, on the contrary, can be nervous or embarrassed.
  2. The second stage, encephalitis – aggression, or rabies. During at this stage the cat becomes the most dangerous for others animals, and for people. The cat will become more and more nervous, irritable and spiteful. Muscle cramps often prevent swallowing; therefore, excessive salivation.
  3. The third stage is paralysis, which usually occurs after seven days. Ultimately, the cat will fall into a coma and die.

A feature of rabies in cats is the expansion of the pupils by all stages of the disease.

How is rabies diagnosed?

Rabies can only be diagnosed by direct examination of the brain. Diagnose the virus in a living animal is impossible. If there is a high the likelihood that the animal is infected with rabies, or if the animal with symptoms of rabies suddenly dies, then the veterinarian may recommend passing samples for diagnosis.

Can a cat survive after being bitten by an infected animal?

In some cases, the saliva of an infected animal virus may not to be. In these cases, the rabies virus will not be transmitted. However, as soon as symptoms develop, the disease always fatal.

After infection, the only possible way to stop the development of a disease is the use of rabies serum, or vaccination. This serum contains specific immune antibodies. to the virus. The most important way to prevent rabies is immediate rabies vaccine. The vaccine will be stimulate the animal to develop its own immunity to rabies virus.

Is vaccination after a bite effective in humans?

Yes, vaccination is effective, but only if the virus rabies did not enter the nervous system. After the virus got into nerve cells, it will spread along nerve fibers, where It is protected from antibodies. Therefore, vaccination after a bite should be passed as quickly as possible.

Is vaccination given to cats after a bite?

Due to the potential risk to humans, an unvaccinated cat, that has bitten or scratched a person is usually not vaccinated, as this may mask signs of infection. If there is a high probability of infection, the safest option is euthanasia an animal; an alternative is strict quarantine for a few months.

Is there a cure for rabies in cats?

There is no cure for rabies in cats, after the appearance of clinical symptoms, it is fatal with 100% guarantee. If a cat is suspected of rabies, then it must be quarantined to prevent its escape or bite anyone.

Can a cat infect humans?

Yes, the rabies virus can be transmitted from any infected animal to man. However, it is transmitted only through bite rabid animal. The virus is present in the saliva of an infected person. animal only for a limited time.

If you have been bitten by any animal that could have been infected, you should immediately wash the wound with soap and water and seek medical advice immediately! Suspicious animals may be homeless or feral dogs, cats or any wild animal, especially if it shows unusual behavior, lack of fear of people, salivation or aggression. Serum rabies treatment or vaccine after a bite can be very successful if given immediately after infection.

Should a cat be vaccinated?

Yes. Rabies vaccination is an important part safety for you and your cat. Vaccines against rabies are very effective and are usually given to kittens from three to four months. Depending on the geographical area, you may revaccination (revaccination) should be recommended.

Are there any side effects of vaccination against rabies?

Vaccines are safe and carry no risk of infection. the virus. The formation of tumors or cancer is associated with types of vaccines, but this is not proven and these cases are extremely rare and controversial. As with other vaccines, some cats may appear individual side effects. These may include lethargy and lack of appetite. If the cat appears more pronounced signs such as difficulty breathing, this may indicate an allergic reaction to one or more components of the vaccine, and you Contact your veterinarian.

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