A Namibian man was on Tuesday admitted to the Katutura Intermediate Hospital with rabies a month after he was bitten by a dog. A video clip which has gone viral on Facebook, shows the man, Malakia Malamba, whose age was not given, barking like a dog while doctors frantically tried to calm him down. It is not clear when the clip was shot, but as at yesterday, Malamba was stable but breathing heavily like a dog. He also looked confused.
Although Malamba could not speak properly, he managed to tell The Namibian that he was bitten by a dog last month while walking in the streets of Okuryangava. The dog, he said, jumped on him and bit him on the stomach. He showed a scar of a wound that is almost healed.
“I don’t know why the dog jumped on me. I was not running. It was painful at the time, like any other sore one can get,” he explained, adding that he got an anti−rabies’ injection at the time. I got all three of them. But after a month or so, I started feeling hot and cold. I started getting scared, especially of dogs,” Malamba stated.
Doctors, who asked not to be identified, said some people might find this funny or link this to witchcraft, but it is possible that a person with rabies can bark like a dog. “I have witnessed four cases. This is the fifth. They bark, though it is hard to believe. I have seen a rabies patient in hospital barking like a dog,” the first doctor said.
The other doctor said the incubation period for rabies is between two and 12 weeks, and sometimes as short as four days. “The closer the site of infection is to your brain, the shorter the incubation period. Like in Malamba’s case, he was bitten on the stomach, and that is why it probably took a month,” the doctor said.
Rabies is a contagious and fatal viral disease of dogs and other mammals which causes madness and convulsions, transmissible through their saliva to humans.
Watch the shocking video clip below: