Provincial vet holds anti-rabies drive-A A +A
Wednesday, March 20, 2013
ASIPULO, Ifugao - The Provincial Veterinary Office (PVET) recently conducted an information, education, and communication drive to the village people of Barangay Panubtuban as part of its continuing effort to make Ifugao a rabies-free by 2016.
PVET Animal Health Services head Dr. Roland Pila explained, during the campaign, to the people what rabies is, how to detect it, preventive measures and the things to be done in case one is bitten by a rabid dog or animal.
He said that rabies is a highly fatal viral disease killing 300-600 Filipinos per year and the most affected are children between 5-24 years of age. The disease can spread from animals to humans when the virus which is present in the saliva of an infected animal mostly dogs penetrates the skin usually through a bite but can also be acquired if a scratch, wound or body openings such as mucous membrane of the eyes, nose or mouth are exposed to contaminated saliva.
In animals, the first sign of rabies is a change in behavior and rabid animals usually stop eating and drinking and may appear to want to be left alone but likely to become vicious or begin to show signs of paralysis.
Pila said some animals bite at the slightest provocation while others become depressed and are difficult to arouse and once the animal shows signs of paralysis, the disease progresses very quickly and then dies.
He advised the village people how to manage bite incidents especially by dogs to wash the wound with soap or detergent under running water, disinfect the wound with alcohol or a tincture of iodine and immediately consult a doctor or seek the nearest bite center in the locality.
For the biting animal like dogs, it must be leashed or confined in a cage and observed for 14 days and not be killed and if the dog dies within 14 days, seek the assistance of a veterinarian for proper submission of specimen for diagnosis or bring the specimen to the nearest animal rabies diagnostic laboratory in the area and consult a veterinarian to clarify other information on animal rabies. (Dan B. Codamon)
Published in the Sun.Star Baguio newspaper on March 21, 2013.