Rabies is spread by a bite or scratch from an infected mammal. Animal bites may need immediate medical attention depending on severity; it is important to clean the wound immediately regardless if medical attention is sought. Your physician may elect to preemptively treat for rabies exposure, but 72 hours is often allowed to receive results of rabies testing prior to treatment. Rabies post-exposure treatment can be discussed when the bite is reported. Reports of animal bites to your local rabies authority should be done within 24 hours. The animal should be confined for a veterinary exam or testing if possible.