Bats are far too intelligent to seek the company of anything as dangerous as humans! Bats are also incredible at maneuvering in flight and will avoid humans. In the extremely rare occasion that this might happen, examine yourself for any bites or scratches, and consult a medical professional if you’re concerned.
It’s important to treat your new bat friends just like you would any wildlife critters or birds in your yard. Never try to touch or handle the animals. On the very rare occasion that a bat would find its way into your home, call your local animal control, and do not try and handle the bat yourself. In the extremely unlikely event that you are bitten or scratched by a bat, go immediately to the hospital. While the odds are extremely small that the bat was carrying rabies, it is always best to take precautionary action.
We get that question a lot. Bats already live all around us, and the chances of getting rabies from a bat is exceedingly rare. Like all mammals, bats can contract rabies (though often at a lower rate than other mammals like raccoons or skunks), but transmission to humans is extremely rare, with just 1-2 cases per year in the U.S. and Canada combined. It’s worth noting that in the majority of those cases, it was a result of a human making the mistake of touching the bat. Never do that. Bats are not pets and should never be handled. For anyone who simply doesn’t handle bats, the odds of contracting any disease are exceedingly remote. Additionally, there are hundreds of thousands of bats living in bat houses across North America, and according to our bat expert, Merlin Tuttle, there's not a single recorded case of a bat house owner being attacked by a bat. In Austin, Texas 1.5 million bats live under the Congress Ave Bridge in the center of the city, have attracted millions of visitors to view their spectacular emergence close-up, and none has ever been attacked or contracted a disease. Less than half a percent of the bat population ever carries rabies, and those that do die off very quickly.
Yes. Today, there are hundreds of thousands of bats living in American bat houses, and according to our expert partner, Merlin Tuttle, there isn’t a single record of a bat house owner having been harmed by a bat. Millions of tourists have viewed 1.5 million bats close-up in Austin, Texas over the past 35 years, and no one has been attacked or contracted a disease from a bat. Bats have a long-standing history of misrepresentation in popular culture. They are portrayed as blood-sucking vampires and serve as spooky mascots of Halloween. In reality, bats are friendly forest critters that just want to be left alone to eat insects. They are incredibly clean since they groom themselves like cats, and despite popular belief, they are not nesters and have no interest in flying into your hair. It’s important to treat bats with respect, as we do all wildlife. They should never be handled or treated as pets, and in no scenario should a bat ever be approached. If a bat ever does seem injured on the ground or near your house, call an animal control specialist to help you manage the situation.