Rabies is a preventable viral disease of mammals that infects the central nervous system. The virus is most often transmitted through the bite of a rabid animal. The vast majority of rabies cases are spread through bites from wild animals like raccoons, skunks, bats, and foxes. Rabies is almost always fatal following the onset of clinical symptoms.
Transmission of rabies virus usually begins when infected saliva of a host is passed to an uninfected mammal through a skin-breaking bite. All species of mammals are susceptible to rabies virus infection, but only a few species are important as reservoirs for the disease, such as dogs, raccoons, skunks, foxes, and coyotes. Several species of insectivorous bats are also reservoirs for strains of the rabies virus.
The period between incubation period is typically 1–3 months in humans.The first symptoms of rabies may be very similar to those of the flu. These symptoms may last for days. As the infection progresses, symptoms will include: