What’s most likely to have rabies in East TN?

Bats, skunks, raccoons, cats, foxes, dogs, and cattle are the most likely animals to have rabies in East Tennessee.
Bats, skunks, raccoons, cats, foxes, dogs, and cattle are the most likely animals to have rabies in East Tennessee.

Any warm-blooded animal can get rabies. Even rabbits and dolphins are at risk. In a few extraordinarily strange cases, it’s been recorded in birds! But there are some animals that are statistically at a higher risk than others.

This can vary quite a bit by region. In our area, bats, skunks, and raccoons together comprise nearly 100% of confirmed rabies cases, with a few cases in cats, foxes, dogs, and cattle trailing statistically behind.

It’s worth noting that some animals have an undeserved reputation when it comes to rabies. Despite public concerns and fears, there is very little risk of contracting rabies from a coyote, bobcat, opossum, or groundhog in East Tennessee.

If you’ve been bitten by an unvaccinated mammal— even those in the highest risk categories— your risk of being exposed to rabies is fairly low anywhere in the United States. But, since rabies is so serious and deadly, it’s important to follow up with your doctor and local health department to protect yourself.

Advertisements
%d bloggers like this: