We’ve already established that a person infected with the zombie “virus” will likely not show any signs of sickness for an extended period of time.  Now ZRS Researcher Jim Wagner suggests that rabies may provide further evidence to support this theory.

Rabies DogRabies is a viral neuroinvasive disease that causes acute inflammation of the brain, and is almost always fatal if not treated prior to onset of symptoms.  It’s transmitted by animals, most commonly from a bite, but occasionally through other forms of body fluid contact.  And the similarities between rabies and zombiism don’t end there:

“Early-stage symptoms of rabies include malaise, headache and fever, later progressing to acute pain, violent movements, and uncontrolled mania and aggression.”

In terms of incubation, the rabies virus travels to the brain through peripheral nerves, and so the time period depends on how far the virus must travel to reach the central nervous system.  A bite on the neck might result in death within a matter of days, while a scratch on the foot might take many months to show any symptoms.

Wagner argues that a zombie infection likely works the same way.  And because the incubation period for rabies can last between ten days and seven years, a zombie outbreak may be nearly impossible to pinpoint, isolate and control if he is correct.

Imagine being infected and not knowing it for almost a decade, then suddenly falling ill, dieing, and coming back to feed on your defenseless family and friends all within just a few hours.

Makes it hard to trust anyone, including yourself.


  1. Rabies would more than likely kill a person before making them a raging zombie, Rabies does cause irritability and aggression but it dose not make you a flesh hungry killer.

  2. I agree with the non-brain eating theory. No brain, no zombie. Though the virus may be in the body still. Even If not coming back to life. Rats eat anyhing though. the rats become infected. But, It’s not the rats we need to worry about. Filthy creatures such as rats attract Fleas or Mosquitos. They drink the blood (that contains the virus). They find a new host to consume. One bite from that flea or mosquito and as it takes blood, it also passed the blood it consumed by the rats. They could spread it fast, as they did the Black Plague in England. That’s my theory

  3. I honestly don’t think that a zombie apocalypse would ever take full effect as it does in the movies….. In the movies the army is portrayed as careless and just plain stupid… in real life with all the weapons at their disposal and all their training they would be able to sweep through no problem and take out the zombie and with all the knowledge we have about them just one or two shots to the head….. in the movies the government are shown as like i don’t even know what making infected zones and such attempting to keep people who are infected but not fully turned alive and all that….. we all know our government is filled with evil people who would do everything possible to keep civilization alive they would never risk humanities necks by keeping a women and two children alive to try and cure them, they would kill them on the spot and anyone who would try to stop them

  4. Rabies also cause infected animals to behave in a way that suggests that the virus makes sure it is spread, meaning a rabid animal will not always kill it’s target, simply bite and then run away. That’s why I don’t really go for the “brain eating” idea. If all zombies attacked with the intent of consuming the brain, then the victim would not become a zombie. We would be lucky if infected killed their targets in this way! Brainless corpses would mean no new zombies. Just like really mutilated victims wouldn’t be much of a threat either(bones stipped clean of muscle)

    • WOW….I feel very oblivious to have never thought of brain eating that way…..wow…oh my god and i usually think of everything 0.0 thats really a big downfall in the whole zombie army xD

  5. rabies is proof that zombie invasion cant end the world. it doesnt spread fast enough. biting, scratching etc. it’s not an effective method to spread. if it were then rabies would be much more prevalent in society already. another important thing to note, is that in movies zombies seem to know the difference between other zombies, and normal people. in real life, they wouldnt,. they’d attack each other. hollywood garbage is just that, garbage

    • rabies is not proof that the zombie virus would be slow or never take effect. while I agree that zombie virus and rabies are similar I also think their different. For all we know a person infected with the z virus could become a zombie within 24 to 48 hours after being infected I mean the flu is that fast. The zombie virus could be a strain of rabies that acts faster doesn’t kill it’s host but they might die in a year or two because of other infections since they don’t care for themselves. people with hepatitis can live for years. so hope for the best but prepare for the worst.

  6. Can we stop using the word “zompocalypse?” It’s retarded. It’s two extra syllables to say “zombie apocalypse.”

  7. Monitoli, that is something like a theory I had. My theory was concerned with our immune system’s reaction to the virus.

    Basically, it consisted as this: if the virus is weak enough, or our immune systems strong enough, then the virus would sit in a semi-dormant state until it overcomes our immune system, whether that is by more infusion of the virus, the virus growing like cancer within us, or we die.

    If the virus is too weak to overcome our immune systems, then we become carriers and the infected would be segregated from the uninfected. This relies on after the initial stages of the zombie invasion are over and everybody has come to terms with what is happening.

    The question was what to do with the infected. If they are otherwise normal, functioning humans, what do we do with them until they die and turn?

    • Actually, it’s funny. If I recall, there is a graphic novel discussing something like this… Ah yes:

      So, I would suppose that some form of segregation (perhaps without so much overt discrimination) would be in order. Beyond that, altering traditional funeral arrangements and medical facilities to account for the possibility of undiagnosed infection. Patients being treated for any form of potentially life-threatening illness or surgery would need to be treated as if infected by default, and should be physically restrained while undergoing bed rest and post-op recovery. Destruction of the deceased’s brain should be performed by trained professionals.

      I believe that a captive-bolt gun should be the best choice in this case. Sterilization of the treatment facility afterward would be required of course.

      Preemptive elimination of the infected is impractical as it will be difficult to accurately determine who is at risk of “turning”. Therefore, I believe that until a safe and accurate testing procedure has been determined, it would be advisable for the attending to destroy the brain at the time of death. Additionally, encouraging all survivors to wear some sort of affixed mouth-guard would help to cut down on risk to medical services and the populace at large.

      • Yep, I read it daily…or atleast whenever she updates the comic. That’s actually where I was getting the idea of what to do with the infected from. 🙂

  8. You know, combined this with the previously posted theory of infection equilibrium, it does suggest that freshly infected victims would be readily consumed before turning, while those with latent infections could turn almost instantly upon death.

    Therefore, in order to sustain a massive horde, much of the population would need to be infected prior to the start of the first observed Zombie. In such, the infection would need to spread rapidly in the initial infection stages without being detected.

    • This is something I haven’t seen brought up yet. Can the z-virus be transmitted through unprotected sex? Is it like HIV/AIDS in this regard?

      Think about how fast HIV spread. I wonder how many people had it before we even had a name for it.

      So I’m thinking, say just a couple people get infected. For this example, I’ll use archeologists that find a burial site where dead zombies were put. The archeologists breathe in the air that’s been accumulated for centuries, the zombie bodies rotting away and throwing their dead, flaky flesh up into the air.

      In this case, the archeologist may be infected and only showing signs of say a flu or some such thing. Then they go out and have sex with their partners or other individuals. It could very well be that the archeologists won’t become zombies right away due to only inhaling the skin particles that were in the crypt.

      So now that they infected other people, those other people have sex with other people, and so on and so on. THEN it really hits the fan as more and more start turning. They wouldn’t even have to be full on zombie in appearance to start biting people and further spreading the virus.

      I can see the z-virus being spread quite rapidly in this form, as people are generally not into sharing all their sexual practices.

      • Well, the Z-virus would probably be transmittable through sexual contact since it most likely is transferred through other bodily fluids such as blood and saliva, making it as, or potentially more infectious (depending on particulate concentration), than HIV. Perhaps the infection mechanism is actually through any given bodily fluid?

        In minute amounts, the infection would be suppressed, and only reveal itself upon the victim’s death. With higher concentrations (say, a direct infusion into the blood-stream through a bite), the infection would not be fully suppressed and would actually cause the subject to expire before reanimation.

        This suggests that we would not be aware of exposure, and that those who encounter the infected are potentially carriers of minute amounts of latent infectious material that will activate upon their expiration regardless of whether they are bitten.

  9. Trust no one! lol

    I’ve often wondered something. In movies, the people don’t usually know what a zombie is. This is not true of us however. The moment a person comes back to life and tries to chew on people, I think most people will know what’s going on.

    Knowledge, in this case and to begin with, is the best weapon. Sometimes I wonder how the zompacalypse will even happen, given the majority of people on this earth know what a zombie is and how to “kill” it.

    Ofcourse, I’m taking for granted that people will even be able to kill a loved one trying to chew on them for dinner. So I guess emotion will actually be the unknown factor in the zompacalypse.

    Now to the article itself, rabies and the zombie virus differ in one major way. The path they travel to the brain. I think the z-virus would travel through the blood, making for a much quicker turnaround. Whereas rabies travels through the nervous system.

    Then again, I might be off the mark on how rabies travels and how the z-virus would travel. But all in all, I don’t think the virus would take years to manifest itself…unless it was designed specifically that way.

    • You know most people wouldn’t believe their eyes if they saw the dead rise. They would be all “oh thank god you not dead” then chomp their dead

    • Your assuming that the virus hasn’t already been spreading for years and lying dormant until it’s triggered by some kind alignment of certain conditions. As I explained on a earlier post the virus could be a natural fail safe designed to keep a balance in the ecosystem. Not actually meant to kill everybody off just keep us in that balance, “Kinda like trimming the hedges”.

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