Take the Rabies Quiz. See below for the answers and explanations. Be Smart. Be Safe. 

Click the button to learn the India National Guidelines for Rabies Prophylaxis.

Rabies Quiz Answers and Explanations (Answers in Red)


1)    Rabies is caused by a:

a)    Bacterium – 16% chose this answer

b)    Virus – 79% chose the correct answer*

c)    Parasite – 5%

d)    Evil Spirit – 0%

*Rabies is caused by a virus, so taking antibiotics will not prevent you getting rabies if bitten by a dog with rabies


2)    The first thing you should do if you are bitten by a dog is:

a)    Apply turmeric – 0%

b)    Go to a temple or witch doctor – 0%

c)    Wash the wound with mild soap and running water for 10 minutes, then go to the hospital. – 78% chose the correct answer*

d)    Get an anti-rabies vaccine – 22%

*Always wash the wound first, this is to remove as much of the saliva containing the virus from your body. Always do this before going to get a vaccine at the nearest hospital. Wash for at least 10 minutes with soap and running water.


3)    Hydrophobia (fear of water) or not drinking water is a symptom of rabies in dogs:

a)    True – 71%

b)    False – 29% chose the correct answer*

* There is no record of dogs, or other animals being afraid of water when they have rabies. Humans do suffer from hydrophobia.


4)    Which of these are symptoms of rabies in dogs:

a)    Sudden behaviour change – 10%

b)    Mouth open and drooling or foaming – 29%

c)    Paralysis – 1%

d)    Change in sound of bark – 0%

e)    All of the above – 61% chose the correct answer*

*There are many symptoms of rabies in dogs, but the symptoms can also be symptoms of other things. One of the biggest symptoms is behaviour change…a friendly dog becoming aggressive, a shy dog becoming more bold, or a friendly outgoing dog becoming shy and trying to hide.


5)    If a dog bites a stick it has rabies, and if it doesn’t bite a stick, it doesn’t have rabies:

a)    True – 10%

b)    False – 90% chose the correct answer*

* This is common myth, you can’t tell if a dog has rabies just based on whether it bites at a stick or not. The dog may be agitated for another reason and bite the stick, or it may be in the dumb phase of rabies ad not be interested in biting anything.


6)    Which other animals can carry rabies

a)    Bats – 79% chose the correct answer*

b)    Snakes – 3%

c)    Lizards – 3%

d)    Birds – 3%

e)    All of the above – 13%

*Rabies is a disease that affects mammals. Animals that lay eggs are not affected by rabies. So birds, reptiles, and amphibians cannot contract rabies.


7)    The usual incubation period (time from being bitten to signs of disease) of rabies in humans is:

a)    3 – 7 days – 27%

b)    1 – 3 weeks – 30%

c)    1 – 3 months – 24% chose the correct answer*

d)    3 – 6 months – 18%

*The usual incubation time is 1 to 3 months, but it has been known to only be 1 week, and as long as 7 years.


8)    The usual incubation period (time from being bitten to signs of disease) of rabies in dogs is:

a)    3 – 7 days – 67%

b)    30 – 45 days – 19% chose the correct answer*

c)    1 – 2 months – 7%

d)    2 – 3 months – 7%

*The average incubation time in dogs is 30 to 45 days, but it can be shorter or longer.


9)    How many people die each year in India from rabies?

a)     20-50 – 16%

b)    200 -500 – 27%

c)    2000 – 5000 – 26%

d)    20,000 – 30,000  – 31% chose the correct answer*

* In India it is estimated that 20,000 to 30,000 people die each year from rabies. Worldwide, 50,000 people die. Meaning that India has the highest incidence of rabies in the world


10)If you suspect a dog has rabies you should:

a)    Kill it – 0% (thank god!)

b)    Try to catch it and tie it up – 3%

c)    Call the local animal rescue/wildlife authorities – 94% chose the correct answer*

d)    Do Nothing – 3%

*You should always call a local authority to come and safely catch the animal and assess it, then deal with it appropriately and humanely. Never try to catch the animal yourself, as you risk being bitten. Also, please note, that the animal will die of rabies within 10 days.  Never kill the animal, this is inhumane and you may aggravate it, putting yourself and others in danger. Never do nothing, this is also irresponsible.


11)Rabies is easily preventable in humans and dogs with vaccination

a)    True – 98% chose the correct answer*

b)    False – 2%

*If you have a series of vaccines before ever being bitten, if you are ever unfortunate enough to get bitten, your immune system will be ready to fight the virus. A post-exposure vaccine will boost your immune system to make sure it destroys the virus before causing symptoms. If you are bitten and have never had an anti-rabies vaccine, you will need an injection of antibodies as soon as possible and then a series of vaccines.


12)There is no cure for rabies

a)    True – 69% chose the correct answer*

b)    False – 31%

*Once symptoms begin there is no cure for rabies. However, it is preventable! If you are bit and have not been vaccinated, you must go to the hospital for immunoglobulin (special injection of antibodies to neutralise the virus at the bite site) as well as receive a series of post exposure vaccinations. If you have been vaccinated, it is still required to get a post-exposure booster vaccine. If the wound is deep, you will also need the immunoglobulin.