Health Information on Rabies

Rabies is a preventable viral disease of mammals most often transmitted through the bite of a rabid animal. The vast majority of rabies cases reported to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) each year occur in wild animals like raccoons, skunks, bats and foxes. Domestic animals account for less than 10 percent of the reported rabies cases, with cats, cattle and dogs most often reported rabid. Learn more about rabies from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

4 things to do if an animal bites you in Fairfax

Rabies Exposure Prevention Tips

  • Vaccinate your pets. Find out about upcoming reduced cost rabies clinics for pets.
  • Do not allow your pets to roam unattended.
  • Enjoy wildlife from afar. Teach children not to handle wild or unfamiliar animals.
  • Do not adopt wild animals.
  • Do not feed wild or stray animals. Secure pet food and trash cans.
  • Report all animal bites and sick or injured animals to Fairfax County Police Department's Animal Control Services.
  • Seal openings in your house so that wildlife may not enter.
  • Learn about bats and rabies and how to protect yourself.

What to Do if an Animal Bites You in Fairfax County

  • Clean the wound thoroughly with soap and water to lessen the chance of infection.
  • Seek medical attention.
  • Report the incident: Fill out Fairfax County's Animal Bite Report PDF icon and call Fairfax County Police Department's Animal Control Services at 703-691-2131, TTY 711
  • Call the Fairfax County Health Department to discuss the incident with the Rabies Coordinator: 703-246-2433

More Information About Rabies

Animal Confinement Report

To report your animal's health status after confinement, complete the animal confinement report.

Watch video Monitoring Rabies in Fairfax County 

audio icon County Conversation: Bryant Bullock, Rabies Prevention (16:56)

Contact Fairfax County: Phone, Email or Twitter | Main Address: 12000 Government Center Parkway, Fairfax, VA 22035
Technical Questions: Web Administrator

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