Do people with late-stage rabies become hostile/aggressive?

Non-human animals with late-stage rabies are often aggressive and will attack larger animals, including humans. Biting is a common mode of transmission, and such biting/aggression is said to be selected for as a property of rabies - specifically because it facilitates transmission.

Do rabid humans become similarly aggressive? And if so, do they resort to biting, or do their cognitive faculties drive them to use other means of carrying out aggression? Raccoons and cats and dogs will bite because, well, that’s what any raccoon/cat/dog does when they’re angry, whether they’re rabid or not. But angry people tend to punch, shoot, stab, bludgeon, and/or choke their victims rather than bite them. So how do rabid humans carry out their aggression?

By this link from healthline, late-stage rabies will include “hyperactivity and excitability” and can include “erratic behavior, confusion, agitation and hallucinations”.

While neither agression nor biting are directly listed as symptoms, they are behaviors that can happen to someone who’s hyperactive, excitable, agitated…
As for your assertion about the behaviors of angry people, those you describe are IME more consistent with males.


Instead of “angry people”, let’s pretend I said “people who are enraged to the point where they wish to physically injure another person.”

End stage rabies can take one of two forms:

“Furious rabies” - this is the one involving biting and violence.

“Paralytic rabies” - the victim is weak, has loss of sensation, and experiences partial or more paralysis. This one does not involve biting and violence.

According to Wikipedia, 80% of human cases result in the furious variant.

(Eventually, either variant ends in coma and death, with rare exceptions. It’s not unusual for furious to morph into paralytic as time goes by.)

People with furious rabies usually wind up restrained in some manner or other. Their bites would be as infectious as any other animal bites at that point, but as noted, human violence can assume myriad forms and incorporate tools rather then natural weaponry.

Unrelated, but interesting article about a rabies survivor.

Not sure what it proves but here is an old video of rabies progression in some poor Iranian bastard, warning don’t drop acid before watching:

Not to make light of this awful situation, but after the wolf attacked the first few villagers why the hell didn’t the rest of them lock themselves away?

Maybe he was wearing sheep skin?:smiley:

And again, my experience with women physically attacking someone else have included other types of behaviors. Men punch and choke; women scratch and bite. Both kick. That’s not exactly a brand-new discovery, and it is borne out by statistics. We even use different means to kill. That story refers to the US; in Spain, men are more likely than women to use a switchblade, women are more likely to use sewing scissors.

I’m recalling an article (?) about a girl who contracted rabies, and towards the end was trying to physically attack her family in the hospital. She had a lucid moment during the attacks, saying something like, “I’m so sorry, I know it’s you guys, I just can’t help it, I love you all!”