Is the rabies disease contagious, that is can it spread from one human to other by means of sharing food?

If not, through what means does can spread, and what are the measures and precautions that must be taken to avoid the spreading of the disease?

  • This question can benefit from more detail. Of course rabies is infectious; this has been known since before Koch's postulates. Are you asking about person-to-person transmission? animal-to-animal? Precautions under what circumstances, coming into contact with a rabid animal? In general, or for game wardens? Veterinarians? Physicians? Please edit to add details. Commented May 4, 2015 at 18:50
  • @anongoodnurse ive edited it in accordance to your comment if its not yet proper please suggest an edit Commented May 4, 2015 at 19:00
  • Please see the other questions I asked in my comment. The entire question can be reworded. Commented May 4, 2015 at 19:05

1 Answer 1


Yes, rabies is most definitely contagious.

The most common route of infection is from the bite of an infected animal, which introduces virus-laden saliva to the victim. It's also possible, though much less likely, to be exposed to infective saliva in the eyes, nose and mouth.

The CDC claims that a person-to-person transmission of the virus via bite is theoretically possible, but has not been documented:

...bite and non-bite exposures inflicted by infected humans could theoretically transmit rabies, but no such cases have been documented.

There has however been person-to-person transmission of the virus through organ transplants, also documented here.

In terms of avoiding spreading the disease, the routes of transmission suggest several clear methods:

  • Avoiding contact with wild animals, or domestic animals in rabies endemic areas showing signs of infection, such as hydrophobia or aggressive behavior.
  • Vaccinating animal populations to interrupt transmission of the virus within wildlife.
  • Postexposure prophylaxis for people who have come in contact with a potentially infectious animal.
  • Screening of organ donors for rabies.

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