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How is rabies spread?

Peter DeLucia
Health Education Specialist

Rabies is spread through a mammal's saliva, via a bite or scratch by an infected animal. Watch public health specialist Peter DeLucia, MPA, discuss how the virus moves through animal populations, and what to do if you've been bitten or scratched.

An exposure to rabies most commonly occurs when a person is bitten by a rabid animal. It can also be transmitted when the saliva from a rabid animal comes in contact with a person's mouth, eyes, nose or a fresh wound. Along with animals such as dogs, foxes, raccoons and skunks, bats are one of the primary animals that transmit rabies.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.