The SPCA together with the South African Veterinary Council urge the public to vaccinate their pets against Rabies.
“We are in the midst of a rabies pandemic; your animals are at risk, not only to rabies but many other prevalent diseases. ,” the SPCA said.
There are 33 confirmed cases of Rabies reported this year alone. One case was a 10 year old boy that passed away.
They asked pet owners to be vigilant by using a registered veterinary practice or local SPCA for their pet’s inoculations. as there are companies that is offering ‘fake’ vaccines to pet-owners.
According to the organisation, there is a company that is administering false 5-in-1 rabies vaccinations to pets.
“The substance that the animal is being injected with is Virbamec which is used to inject farm animals for the treatment of parasites,” the SPCA said via a Facebook.
“This fraudulent activity has been reported in the Tongaat area, we are unsure if other areas have been targeted by these men or other persons/groups who may be carrying out similar activities,” they said.
Dr. Fyvie provides some tips on how to keep you and your family safe from rabies:
- Children under the age of 15 make up 40% of the reported cases of being bitten by a suspected rabies-infected animal. It is important to warn your children of the risks of interacting with strays and pets that are not theirs or that are acting differently.
- Never take a chance. If bitten, scratched or in contact with their saliva, assume the worst and follow the treatment protocol. There is simply nothing that can be done once the symptoms present themselves.
- Ensure your pets’ rabies vaccinations are up to date and if you are in an immediate outbreak area, have your pet revaccinated. If you can’t provide proof of a pet’s vaccination status, and your pet encounters a rabid animal, it will be euthanised regardless of whether or not your pet is showing symptoms.
- Never let your pets roam the streets.
- Do not let your pets interact with unknown animals. An animal can become infected by fighting with another animal, even over a fence.
- Do not approach stray dogs or cats, especially if they are showing abnormal behaviour, such as being aggressive or very docile.
- If you suspect an animal is infected, contact the health authorities immediately. Do not try to restrain the animal yourself.
- Donate to a welfare organisation that conducts rabies vaccination outreach programmes. The higher the vaccinated animal population, the less chance there is of an outbreak.