July 16, 2023

What Does a Bat Bite Look Like?

Bats are known to carry bacteria and viruses that can cause serious health problems for humans, including rabies. Because they can be painless and often mistaken for pimples, it is important to know what a bat bite looks like so that you can recognize it and get prompt medical treatment.

Fortunately, bat teeth are only capable of scratching exposed skin or, very rarely, puncturing it, so most bat bites look very similar to the appearance of a pin prick. Nevertheless, the bite should always be treated as a potential danger and a serious medical emergency.

It is also important to remember that bat bite marks may look a bit more like pimples than a regular bruise, especially on the face or neck, where they tend to occur most commonly. Furthermore, a swollen or red area surrounding the mark is usually present in most cases. Finally, if you believe that you have been bitten by a bat, a doctor will probably recommend rabies post-exposure prophylaxis (PEP). This is a series of rabies vaccines given in the arm over a few weeks followed by an injection of human rabies immune globulin in the site of exposure.

Fortunately, most bats don’t have rabies and won’t attack or bite people unless they feel threatened. The most common ways to get a rabies-related bite is to be bitten while trying to handle or catch the animal, or when the bat is infected with rabies and attacks to protect itself. Bats are usually very shy and will avoid contact with humans, and if you do see a bat in your home or yard, it is best to let it be alone.


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