What Are Some Rabies Symptoms in Dogs?


Quick Answer

Rabies symptoms in dogs include a loss of appetite, a change in normal behavior, consistent aggressive behavior such as barking, growling or attempting to bite or attack other animals, people or objects, foaming at the mouth or choking, the mouth hanging open or paralysis of the jaw and throat muscles. There are three phases of the illness: the prodromal, furious and paralytic phases.

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What Are Some Rabies Symptoms in Dogs?
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Full Answer

During the prodromal phase, the dog begins to exhibit the first symptoms of rabies, such as a change in tone of the dog's bark, chewing at the bite site, fever and loss of appetite. The prodromal phase lasts for two to three days depending on how close the initial bite was to the dog's head. The prodromal is followed by the furious phase, in which the dog becomes aggressive and begins to try to eat or bite anything, barks or growls constantly, exhibits extremely erratic behavior, shows anxiety and hyperalertness, suffers from seizures or is generally uncoordinated in its movements. The furious phase generally lasts anywhere from one to seven days, at which point the dog enters the paralytic phase. Symptoms of this phase include choking, the lower jaw hanging open, excessive drooling and foaming at the mouth, and ultimately complete body paralysis, at which point the dog enters a coma and dies. This final phase can last anywhere from two to four days.

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