Efforts at eradicating rabies ongoing

Lo Khere Chiang

KUCHING: The Padawan Municipal Council (MPP) is stepping up efforts to eradicate rabies within the municipality, despite the Covid-19 pandemic.

Its chairman Lo Khere Chiang said the rabies situation in the area was still worrisome hence efforts to eradicate rabies have been on-going.

Rabies is a viral infection spread through the bite of an infected animal, either wild or stray, however the majority of rabies cases have come from dogs.

“Although right now, we are busy with the Covid-19 vaccination, the efforts to eradicate rabies are on-going since this area has not yet reach zero cases.

“As we know rabies is fatal once clinical signs appear, but it is preventable through effective interventions,” he said, citing the interventions as rabies awareness, neutering and mass vaccination of dogs.

“We did have an Ops Rabies around July last year in areas where we received complaints, which involved the Kota Samarahan Municipal Council (MPKS), the Veterinary Department, and Royal Malaysian Police (PDRM).

“It included mass vaccination of dogs, targeted removal of free roaming dogs and strays, carrying out awareness programmes, conducting active and passive surveillances,” he said.

Lo urged the public to be responsible pet owners by vaccinating and neutering their pets to assist in the eradication of rabies in the area.

“It is crucial to ensure that our pets are vaccinated, and it is even better to neuter them in order to reduce the population of pet dogs or wild dogs.

“But, most importantly, the public is advised to take rabies prevention measures, such as seeking immediate medical care if bitten by an aggressive pet animal or stray dog,” he added.