Hi there! I recently went for a walk and walked

Patient

Q: Hi there!

I recently went for a walk and walked passed a dead animal. I'm not sure if there were any remains I stepped in on the path or if it was all in the grass to begin with. I didn't see anything obvious. I then came home and washed my feet since, I was worried something could have gotten on my toes. (I had sandals on). I have a small cut on my hand, is there any risk of rabies from an encounter like this?

A few days later, I threw out the shoes with cuts on my hands....any chance I contaminated myself again....if rabies was present?

Symptoms:  None
Doctor

A:   Hello. Welcome to Ask The Doctor. We are here to help you.

See we don't suspect rabies infection in such a way. However if you had a cut anywhere and the area was exposed to the any animal then only rabies can be contracted. One can't contract rabies by walking in forest area without a direct contact with an animal.

So, there are no chances of rabies infection if you had no direct contact with animal. In case you had any exposure you should go ahead for rabies vaccination without a second thought.

In your case scenario more important is tetanus vaccination. You should take a Tetanus Toxoid injection as a booster dose in this case scenario.
I hope the information help you.

If you have any further query, please ask me.
Stay Healthy.

Comments / Follow Ups

Patient: Just to be clear, because I did not have direct contact...like sticking my hands directly in the animal, I had no risk?

My shoes touching an area where the animal may have been at some point does not constitute an exposure?

I am good on tetanus.
Doctor: Hi. In that case there is no indication of taking rabies prophylaxis.
Good luck.

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