An article on rabies from Dosing Health

It looks like many people have short-term memory these days.

The last rabies scare was in Sept-Oct 2015 which resulted in the very unnecessary deaths of too many innocent dogs and cats.  International help, vaccination and sharing of knowledge were offered but I think most animal lovers will never forget what happened in Penang.

As responsible animal caregivers or humans who believe in justice and fairplay, let us educate ourselves, our family and friends so that street animals do not have to needlessly suffer at the hands of those who refuse to be educated.

This is a short but informative article on rabies, from Dosing Health (a website written by Malaysian pharmacists with PhD’s):

Rabies: What it is and why it matters to me?

Pertinent points:

Unvaccinated domestic pets such as dogs and cats can acquire the virus from infected reservoir hosts when they are outdoors unsupervised. Since the virus is typically found in high concentration in saliva, the disease can be transmitted to pet owners if the saliva comes into contact with wounds or mucous membranes. However, it is worth noting that the virus cannot enter your body through intact skin therefore, touching or licking on intact skin by animals will not spread the disease. Moreover, not all rabid animal bites will result in disease transmission since the viral load in the saliva of infected animals varies largely depending on species and viral strain.

What should I do?

  • If you suspect that you are bitten or scratched by an infected animal, wash the wound with soap and water or other useful detergents for a minimum of 15 minutes, followed by application with povidone-iodine or 70% ethanol. Seek medical attention IMMEDIATELY Post-exposure treatment is most effective when initiated soon after exposure.
  • Vaccinate your pets to break the human transmission. According to the World Health Organization, rabies is 100% vaccine-preventable which revolves around mass vaccination of animals especially dogs.
  • Watch out for signs and symptoms of infection in pets which include aggression, restlessness, apprehension, paralysis, seizures, foaming at the mouth, especially if there was prior contact with rabid or wild animals. If you suspect that your pet could be rabid; ensure it is confined (if it is safe to do so) and notify local authorities.
  • Avoid stray cats or dogs particularly in geographical area known for rabies cases.
  • Avoid handling or feeding wild animals especially the ones behaving erratically or are violent.
  • If there are bats around your housing area, seal cracks and gaps to prevent the bats from entering your home.

1 comment to An article on rabies from Dosing Health

  • Adeline

    Since Rabies is transmitted via bites and saliva not air-borned. Culling will increase the dog movement which will result in more dog fights/bites between the dogs in the existing territory and new dogs that migrated from elsewhere where they feel their area are not safe anymore. In reality, only the friendly community dogs that trusted human being are the one been caught as the real stray will be out of sight. More dog bites will help to spread the rabies even faster.Thus culling will do more harm than good. Mass vaccination is the correct way to make the situation under control. Be careful when buying an imported dog as it might be a smuggled dog from the neighboring rabies infected country