When people think of squirrels, they might imagine them as adorable woodland creatures. Most homeowners do not necessarily think of squirrels as pests and fewer would associate them with rabies. The reality, though, is that squirrels can carry rabies just like any other warm-blooded animal.
By the time you feel the need to ask, “Do squirrels have rabies?” you should already be taking action. It is important to understand the signs and symptoms of rabies in squirrels and to take steps toward removing troublesome squirrels from your property before they cause any major problems.
Do Squirrels Have Rabies?
It is possible for squirrels to have rabies, though it is a very rare occurrence for such small animals. However, there are a few telltale signs that may indicate right away that a squirrel is rabid. Squirrels are generally bold, somewhat aggressive, and highly active. When a squirrel is rabid, though, it may be even more aggressive than usual or attack other creatures unprovoked.
Rabies can also cause a squirrel to be uncharacteristically lethargic or unusually fearless. Other symptoms of rabies in squirrels include total or partial paralysis, strange walking patterns, and other behaviours that are erratic or unusual.
Can You Get Rabies From a Scratch?
The transference of rabies typically occurs through biting. When squirrels have rabies, though, they might lash out and attack with a scratch. A scratch alone will not typically lead to a rabies infection, but an open wound does create an opportunity for exposure to infectious material. If a scratch wound comes into contact with saliva or blood from a rabid animal, it can lead to a rabies infection.
Even in the rare cases that a squirrel carries rabies, it is extremely unlikely that the critter will infect a human. The greater threat is to your pets. There is a chance that a rabid squirrel will bite and infect your house pet. Worse yet, a house cat may attempt to hunt the infected squirrel and expose itself to rabies that way.
How Can You Remove a Rabid Squirrel?
If you have a squirrel problem on your property, particularly when you suspect that there are squirrels that have rabies, it is important that you avoid touching the animal or trying to remove it yourself. You should always work with an animal control specialist who understands how to safely and humanely remove pests and other unwanted animals away from your home. At Skedaddle Humane Wildlife Control, we identify the signs of a squirrel infestation to track down the total number of critters making themselves a nuisance on your property.
After safely removing the squirrels from your home using one-way doors, we also take measures to deter rodents from returning. Our team is able to safely identify any infected animals. You can also take matters into your own hands to keep squirrels away from your garden by covering your plants or spreading mulch. Squirrels also have a habit of climbing bird feeders that you might keep in your backyard, so opting for a feeder that is more difficult to climb can make your garden less appealing to wildlife.
Contact Skedaddle for Wildlife Control in Vaughan
When you notice a squirrel causing problems on your property, you might naturally wonder if squirrels have rabies. The answer, more often than not, is that squirrels are not likely to carry rabies. It is always better to be safe than sorry, though, so the prudent course of action is to work with wildlife control professionals who will ensure that you, your pets, and your home are safe from potentially rabid animals. Contact Skedaddle today to learn more about how we can help with wildlife control in Vaughan.