What Diseases Do Bats Spread?

Questions often arise when people are stuck with bats in their home. One of the first questions people ask is what diseases do bats have and are they harmful to humans? There are several diseases linked to bats in which can be harmful to humans and sometimes fatal. The two common diseases are the lung disease histoplasmosis and the rabies virus. Histoplasmosis comes from bat guano and the rabie virus comes from the bite or scratch of a bat.

Bat Guano

What Are Rabies?

How do Humans Contract it? Rabies is a preventable viral infection located in the central nervous system usually committed through interactions with mammals. Generally rabies are contracted through a bite but sometimes can be contracted through infectious saliva that enters into your eyes, mouth, or open wounds. if a bat is just flying around in your home or in a room you can not contract rabies unless you come in contact with it by a bite or possibly a scratch. Coming into contact with bat guano (feces) or urine you cannot contract this viral infection. In fact less than 1% of all bats ever tested actually come back positive with rabies. Even though the likeliness of a bat having rabies is small it is still highly recommended to have post contact vaccination. See your local physician for more details. If you have a bat in the house while you are sleeping or if you have young children you should contact your local health department for information on post contact vaccination. More information on therabies virus visit the batcon.org website. For positive cases of rabies in Michigan visit Michigan.gov

What is Histoplasmosis?

How do Humans Contract it? Histoplasmosis is a disease caused by the fungus Histoplasma capsulatum. The fungus lives in the environment, usually in association with large amounts of bird or bat droppings. Lung infection can occur after a person inhales airborne, microscopic, fungal spores from the environment; however, many people who inhale the spores do not get sick. The symptoms of histoplasmosis are similar to pneumonia, and the infection can sometimes become serious if it is not treated, especially if the infection spreads from the lungs to other organs.

Many people who are infected with the fungus do not show any symptoms. In areas of the world where the fungus is very common in the environment, many people may have been infected with Histoplasma capsulatum without having any symptoms. If symptoms occur, they usually start within 3 to 17 days after being exposed to the fungus. In people who develop disease, the most common symptoms are similar to those of pneumonia, and include: fever, chest pains, and a dry or nonproductive cough. Some people may also experience joint pain. If the disease is not treated, it can disseminate (spread) from the lungs to other organs.


Bat in the house? Test it For Rabies.

Bat Bites

You May Not Feel a Bat Bite.

Seek Medical Attention

Get Help if You Suspect a Bite.


Get Tested if Bats Are in the Attic.

Professional Bat Control

Help: If you need a professional bat control company in Michigan we can give you advice on how to hire a bat removal pro. We can give you a free online price quote to help you budget your bat exclusion or attic restoration job.​