Cebu City DVMF reminds public to vaccinate pet dogs too
CEBU CITY, Philippines — The Cebu City Department of Veterinary Medicine and Fisheries (DVMF) is reminding the public to vaccinate their dogs against rabies.
City Veterinarian, Doctor Jennifer Laurente said that in 2020, the DVMF has vaccinated 18,748 dogs from all over the city from the 4,000 vials they have purchased that year.
The agency found it difficult to conduct vaccination during the ongoing Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic that is why at least 3,000 vials remain undistributed.
A vial of rabies vaccine can inoculate at least 10 dogs.
Laurente said that the cases of the dog-positive and human-positive rabies in 2020 totaled 11 cases and 1 case, respectively.
High risk areas include Barangays Binaliw, Kinasangan, Ermita, Hipodromo, Bulacao, Lahug, and Apas.
“Giuna namo ang mga high risk areas sa pag vaccinate karon. Hapit na ta mahuman then isunod na nato ang uban katong moderate or low risk areas,” said the veterinarian.
(We prioritized the high-risk areas first. We’re almost done then we’ll follow with the moderate or low-risk areas.)
For 2021, the DVMF has vaccinated 4,659 dogs in January, 2,263 in February, and 4,922 in March, for a total of 11,844 dogs.
Four rabies cases were recorded in Barangays Mabolo, Lahug, Mambaling, and San Nicolas and another three cases in Barangay Poblacion Pardo.
Laurente said that the DVMF is fast-racking the vaccination because they were halted during the peak of the pandemic in 2020.
The rabies vaccination is necessary because the rabies virus can infect humans and can cause deaths to infected individuals.
“Mao na nga importante kaayo nga mavaccinan atong mga iro, ” said Laurente.
(That’s why it’s important to vaccinate our dogs.)
Laurente warned pet owners that if their unvaccinated pet causes harm to another individual and this individual catches rabies, the owners will be held liable.
This is why the registration is important, to monitor a dog’s yearly vaccination, and ensure that the owner takes responsibility in caring for the dog.
The DVMF said it will be visiting the barangays on particular schedules or upon the request of the barangay for free vaccination drives for pets.
Laurente hopes that amid the pandemic and battle against the COVID-19, residents will not forget of that their pets need vaccination too against the rabies virus.
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