Squirrels and Rabies
Name: Joy S.
Date: Thursday, November 28, 2002
Can humans get rabies from a squirrel bite?
I overhead a conversation in which a teacher stated that squirrels do NOT
transmit rabies to humans because the squirrels have an unusual dentation
that keeps the saliva which transmits the rabies in the back of the mouth
of the squirrel, therefore the saliva carrying the rabies virus would not
enter the puncture wound the squirrel made with the bite.
I this right?
I would not count on that assertion. Rabies can be carried and transmitted by
any mammal. For a little information on the squirrel issue, try this link to
the CDC. Do a Goggle search on "rabies" as well.
http://www.cdc.gov/ncidod/dvrd/rabies/Ques&Ans/q&a.htm#What animals get rabies
No. Squirrels are not a primary threat of transfer of rabies, raccoons and
skunks are the most common carriers, but any mammal can carry rabies,
squirrels can and will bite people, so there is a danger, even if perhaps
smaller than with other animals.
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Update: June 2012