Punjab government has initiated mass anti-rabies vaccination of street dogs in 11 of the 22 districts of the state. The state government took this initiative in order to make Punjab a model state for rabies and dog bite prevention.
It is only the 3rd state funded and managed programme in the country exclusively for vaccination of dogs. This initiative follows a proposal by Peedu’s People and Federation of Indian Animal Protection Organizations (FIAPO), under Rabies Free India campaign.
The State Health authorities had earlier provided counseling facility for dog-bite victims in the two civil dispensaries at Sector 19 and Sector 38 of the city to address the issue of human-dog conflict in a holistic manner.
In a statement, Lakshmi Venkataraman, Campaign Coordinator, Rabies Free India, FIAPO said,
“This programme by the Punjab government is a huge step in the right direction. Rabies is one of the key health issues faced by the Indian public, yet it has historically been low on the government’s priority list. Mass vaccination of street dogs has effectively curbed rabies in the past – Sikkim and Goa are examples of this.”
Inder Sandhu, Founder, Peedu’s People further added,
“This step by the government is crucial to eliminate rabies in a scientific and calculated manner. Random vaccinations of dogs and post-bite care for humans alone have not worked for decades and will never be enough in eliminating rabies.”
Efforts are also being made by four government departments– urban and rural department, animal husbandry, education and health to scientifically and humanely reduce human-dog conflict in the state.
Reference: The Times Of India
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