WILDLIFE Vets International (WVI) has vaccinated 1 222 domestic dogs against rabies in villages surrounding Hwange National Park.
By Nokuthaba Dlamini
Painted Dog Conservation (PDC) posted on their website yesterday, saying the move would go a long way to protect people living near the park.
“From September 18 to 22, Wildlife Vets International, together with Zimbabwe’s Veterinary services and PDC co-ordination, went into 15 communities vaccinating domestic dogs against rabies,” PDC said.
“Rabies remains a threat to painted dog populations in adjacent Hwange National Park. The teams also did castrations and spays and in total, we had 1 222 vaccinations, 64 castrations and 44 spays.”
Rabies is a contagious and fatal viral disease of dogs and other mammals that can cause madness and convulsions, transmissible through the saliva to humans.
PDC said the vaccination received an overwhelming support from the people.
“Needless to say, the community was over the moon, as they received these services for free. The support that many of you give us, including WVI, makes so much difference to people and wildlife,” the organisation said.
“We believe that training key people in conservation medicine will contribute to sustainable, long-term solutions for saving wild animals and the people with whom they share their world.”
WVI was created to provide the veterinary support and skills to conservationists saving endangered species.
PDC said wild dogs were highly-endangered species, threatened by diseases, snares, road-kills and habitat loss.