Saturday, January 23, 2010

Do baby squirrels carry any diseases of any particular concern?

I captured a baby squirrel that was injured (brain injury most likely) and am going to turn it into a wildlife rehab center in the morning - he seems to be calmed by petting with a paper towel. Is there any harm to myself from touching it with my bare hands to pet it? I'm pretty sure they don't carry any diseases of any concern as long as I don't like, stick my fingers in my mouth or anything but if anyone knows anything about this sort of thing let me know :)Do baby squirrels carry any diseases of any particular concern?
Squirrels do NOT carry rabies, nor does any other rodent, including rats, mice, hamsters, gerbils, or guinea pigs, nor do rabbits, even though those are not considered rodents. (The booklet put out by The Health Department stating this also says that no post-exposure shots are ever necessary after having been bitten, even though a lot of unknowing people do like to perpetuate this myth. -- Bitty baby squirrels don't bite anyway.)


Squirrels are virtually disease-free and are very clean little animals (though they do make big messes when they are older, IF they are healthy). They do NOT carry diseases transmissible to humans. They can get abscesses in 10 days to 2 weeks from biting each other but do NOT infect people when bites are sustained from mishandling the older babies or adults.





Cats do NOT infect squirrels, either, so no antibiotic is EVER necessary if a cat finds one, baby or adult, and brings it home. Sometimes the small scrapes or scratches found on babies are caused by his fall from the tree and what twigs he hit on the way down, not necessarily by the cat.Do baby squirrels carry any diseases of any particular concern?
This is a dangerous and ill-informed answer.





Any mammal can get rabies.





Source: http://www.cdc.gov/

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There are many diseases they could have, just be careful of being bit and keep your hands washed.





Give him some blankets, paper towles,or towls, anything he can burrow in, and put a light on him that gives off heat, to help keep him warm.


Don't give him anything to eat or drink for 24 hrs. When they are stressed their bodies need time to relax and recuperate, that's why you wait 24 hrs. After 24 hrs. give him some gateraide(I'm serious- a wildlife rescue told me to do this with an injured baby squirrel.). You can use a dropper or an animal baby bottle if it is big enough(you can find these at any petstore or even walmart). Be ready, it doesn't take gateraide long to work. He will get very frisky quickly. Good luck with him.
They can carry rabies, but they are not common carriers. Fleas on squirrels can carry the plauge..but if there was an outbreak in your area...believe me..you would know about it. As long as you did not get bitten...you should be fine.





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No. Squirrels are not a primary threat of transfer of rabies, raccoons and


skunks are the most common carriers, but any mammal can carry rabies,


squirrels can and will bite people, so there is a danger, even if perhaps


smaller than with other animals.





J. Elliott





Above is from ';Ask a Scientist';...which states that ANY mammal can carry rabies..in response to the above answer.
I've raised baby squirrels, and turning them into a wildlife rehab center has to be done, but I never caught anything, nor did my cats (blondemom is dead-on). Love the little critters.
Their bites can hurt and can become infected, but they don't carry any diseases you need to worry about. They do have fleas, which can spread to your pets. They can become infected from a cat bite...and need antibiotics. I've seen it plenty of times. Keep him warm and get him to rehab asap.
Squirrels are rodents and can carry rabies. If your skin is broken by a tooth or claw there is a reasonlably high chance it will get infected. Gloves, the thicker the better, would probably be best for handling it.

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