A cross-sectional study was conducted from February 2017 to April 2017 to assess knowledge, attitude and practices of the community towards rabies in south Gondar zone, Ethiopia. A structured closed ended questionnaire was used to collect the data through face to face interviews among 384 respondents. The data were then analyzed using SPSS statistical software version 20. Almost all (91.5%) surveyed individuals were aware of rabies. Bite was known as mode of rabies transmission by majority of the respondents (71.1%) with considerable means of transmission through wound contact with saliva of diseased animals. Sudden change of behavior was described as a major clinical sign of rabies in animals by the majority of the respondents. Nearly half of the respondents (48.2%) believed that consumption of rabid animal's meat can be a medicine for human rabies and majority of the respondents (66.7%) indicated crossing a river before 40 days after dog bite increases severity of the disease. More than eighty percent of the respondents prefer traditional medicines for treating rabies in humans. In total, 51% of the respondents had poor Knowledge, Attitudes and Practices (KAP) level about the disease rabies. Educational status (χ2 = 21.152), Monthly income (χ2 = 23.059), Sex (χ2 = 11.249), source of information (χ2 = 8.594) and Residence (χ2 = 4.109) were significantly associated with KAP scores (p < 0.05). Education and awareness creation should be given to increase communities KAP about the disease with special focus to traditional healers.
Keywords: attitude; factors; knowledge; practice; rabies; south Gondar.