RABIES in humans
- Last Updated: Friday, 10 February 2017 12:39
Rabies is a viral infection that is almost always fatal if left untreated.
What can you do to protect yourself and your family from rabies? As required by law in Ontario, vaccinating your pets is the best course of action for protection against rabies. Ontario vet clinics offer 3 solutions; a three-year vaccine, a one year vaccine, and titre testing which measures antibodies in their system to determine if your pet is still protected from earlier vaccinations. For most, the best course of action is a 3-year vaccine to ensure protection against rabies.
There is no treatment or cure for rabies in humans once the symptoms appear and it is almost always fatal. If you have been exposed to, or suspect exposure to rabies, there is a post exposure vaccine available through the public health system. This treatment for rabies is effective only if given immediately after exposure. Rabies vaccinations for humans and pets will not work once the symptoms of rabies appear. If you think you have been infected or exposed to the virus, immediate medical attention is the only treatment. There are no early symptoms of rabies, once the symptoms appear, it is too late and fatal in almost 100% of cases. Post-exposure vaccinations for rabies in humans are covered under OHIP. The rabies shots are not as painful as they once were and only involve 5 shots, over a period of 14 days.
Individuals working in high exposure industries, specifically ones that involve wildlife or animals are often required to have an up to date rabies exposure vaccine. If you are concerned that you are in high risk situations such as hunting, trapping, or wildlife rehabilitation, speak with your Doctor about the vaccine.
Trapping and relocating animals that carry rabies does not prevent the spread of rabies in Ontario, and can in fact help it spread. Most relocated animals can return to the area they were trapped, often within one night. Hawkeye is the only licensed animal control company that can humanely euthanize the animal permanent and safe removal, preventing the spread of rabies. Contact Hawkeye Bird and Animal Control at 1-855-393-4295 or email@example.com for more information.