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Travel health information for people travelling abroad from the UK

Rabies (Animal) in Greece

08 Mar 2013

On 01 March 2013, the Animal Health Directorate for Greece reported a further case of animal rabies virus infection. The animal in this report was a domestic farm cat in Trikala prefecture, Thessalia region of northern Greece. The cat bit both owners and potentially put 130 cattle on the farm at risk of infection. Rabies virus infection was confimed post-mortem in the cat.

Trikala prefecture in Thessalia region is not far from the border of Western Macedonia region where rabies infection was reported in a dog and fox in October and November 2012. Prior to October 2012, it had been 25 years since rabies was reported in terrestrial animals in Greece.

Advice for Travellers

This northern region of Greece is not a popular tourist destination and rabies pre-exposure vaccine would not be considered for most travellers as this country is considered low risk for rabies by WHO.

Travellers should be aware that northern Greece borders two countries with a high risk of rabies. Any animal bite should be reported as soon as possible for assessment. Travellers should not approach wild animals that appear to be behaving strangely.