Can Birds Get Rabies?

Key Takeaways
Fact Description
Birds cannot get rabies Rabies affects only mammals
Rabies in animals More than 90% of reported cases of rabies in animals occur in wildlife

The question “Can birds get rabies?” might seem straightforward, but it’s an important one to address. The answer is no. Birds cannot get rabies. Rabies is a viral infection that primarily affects mammals.

Understanding Rabies

Rabies is a viral infection that spreads through saliva and affects the central nervous system. While the disease is treatable initially, treatment becomes less likely as it progresses. Left untreated, rabies ultimately results in death.

Rabies in Animals

Rabies primarily affects mammals. In the United States, more than 90% of reported cases of rabies in animals occur in wildlife. The wild animals that most commonly carry rabies in the United States are raccoons, skunks, bats, and foxes.

Rabies in Mammals vs Birds

Trait Mammals Birds
Can get rabies Yes No
Examples Raccoons, skunks, bats, foxes N/A

Related Questions

Question Answer
Can all animals get rabies? No, rabies primarily affects mammals.
Can humans get rabies? Yes, humans can get rabies, typically from a bite from an infected animal.


So, can birds get rabies? The answer is no. Birds, along with fish and reptiles, cannot get rabies. Instead, the rabies infection is confined only to mammals. This understanding is crucial for both public health and wildlife conservation efforts. Remember, it’s always important to avoid contact with wild animals and ensure your pets are vaccinated against rabies.

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