Rabies is a fatal viral disease that affects the nervous system of mammals, including humans. Cattle in the certain areas of Mexico are particularly susceptible to rabies infections because of vampire bat presence in the area.
The vampire bats use their razor-sharp front teeth to make a small cut in the cow's hide and then lap the blood from the wound. Rabies can be transmitted through this feeding process.
Only vampire bats feed on the blood of animals but not all vampire bats have rabies. If a vampire bat has rabies and bites your unvaccinated animal, your animal will contract rabies and die.
In Mexico, it has been estimated that about 2% of unvaccinated cattle die from rabies each year, but in some areas of Mexico up to 20% die. Some years, there is less of a rabies problem, and other years there is more of a rabies problem.
Rabies can be prevented through vaccinating your cattle on a regular basis. Your veterinarian or the local livestock representative can supply vaccination, syringes, needles, and advice on vaccination.
It is important that all cattle are vaccinated at least once a year. If the animal is young (under 3 months) it may need several shots to be protected. Ask your veterinarian about the vaccination calendar.