Can Animals Be Born With Rabies ?

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Can Animals Be Born With Rabies ?

Rabies is a disease that is caused due to virus. A person can get the rabies causing virus by being bitten by an infected animal. Usually animals like dogs, cats, foxes, raccoons, bats, skunks and rodents are carriers of the virus. Domestic animals can be vaccinated against the virus, but not much can be done about the wild animals.

This brings us to the next question that is often asked when discussing rabies is whether animals can be born with rabies. The answer to this is no, animals cannot be born with the virus. This is not a genetic disease, so pregnant animals cannot pass on the virus during the gestation period to their fetuses. However, the virus is present in an animal's milk, and it is through this source that the newborn animal can get infected by the rabies virus.

On entering the body, the virus has an incubation period and then moves along the nerves to make its way to the brain. Once the virus reaches the brain, the symptoms of the disease begin to manifest. After affecting the brain, the virus then moves to the salivary glands and thus, can be spread and transmitted to other animals and humans if they are bitten by the infected animal or the saliva enters an open wound, puncture in the skin or cut.

In animals usually the disease is fatal as one realizes that the animal has rabies at a later stage when treatment becomes ineffective. However, some animals are carriers of the virus and may not show any sign of the disease. It is these animals who infect their offsprings at the time of birth. So, the newborn animal is born rabies-free, but gets the virus through the mother's milk or when being licked by the mother.

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Can Animals Be Born With Rabies