Is a groundhog that is active during the daytime rabid?
Many people are aware of the fact that the majority of rodents, including groundhogs, are nocturnal animals, meaning they are active during the night and sleep during the day. This can be a reason for worry when you see a groundhog, a rodent animal, walking around during the day –you might even ask yourself if this animal is rabid. Luckily, there aren't that many cases of groundhogs seen during the day, and not many of those are rabid.
First of all, one should consider that not all animals within the species act entirely the same. This means that seeing one groundhog walking around during the day doesn't mean it is rabid. There are other important reasons that could make an otherwise nocturnal animal become active during the day, and this reason is completely survival mode – maybe this particular animal is under attack and is running for its life.
This might be a good moment to mention that groundhogs aren't actually nocturnal animals. They actually spend lots of their time and the active part of their lives during the day. The fact that we don't see groundhogs a lot simply means that they don't like to spend much time around people and actually spend most of their time in their dens, under the ground. However, they are primarily active during the day, and they will walk around in a search for food during the day, so don't worry if you see one or more of them somewhere near your home in the middle of the day.
Additionally, it is also good to mention that groundhogs don't often fall victim to rabies. Another more common disease for groundhogs is a roundworm infection, and this also isn't a reason to worry too much because roundworm is transferred primarily through meat.
What are some symptoms of a rabid groundhog?
Although this is a very unlikely case, you can suspect that a groundhog is rabid if you notice one or more of the following symptoms:
§ producing aggressive sounds, such as growling
§ tries to eat anything and everything
§ anxious, strange behavior with elements of aggression
§ trembling, seizures, uncoordinated movements
In the case of such symptoms, move away from the animal and contact pest control immediately.
Go back to the How to Get Rid of Groundhogs page or email us if you have any other questions about Is a groundhog that is active during the daytime rabid?
We are the Pest Education Network, a non-profit organization that focuses on wildlife and pest removal education. Our approach utilizes Integrated Pest Management, a strategy advocating prevention and humane methods.