While the city is still fighting a difficult battle against rabies, doctors on Thursday cautioned people to be vigilant against zoonotic diseases. The Institute of Preventive Medicines, in a survey last year, said that number of rabies cases is 62,000. The prevalence of many stray dogs in the city is causing rabies, say doctors.
Even though GHMC’s sterilization and vaccination programme has been valid since 2009, the situation is not showing improvement. Authorities have failed to control the stray dog populace.
On World Zoonoses Day, doctors cautioned against many diseases being transmitted from animals to humans. The day is observed every year on July 6 to raise understanding against diseases that can be transmitted from animals to humans, also known as zoonotic diseases.
The experts say that rabies is one of the most commonly transmitted diseases from dogs. Rabies can result in death, if not cured early. The difficulty in getting the rabies immunoglobulin vaccine has complicated the issue further, becoming unaffordable for many patients affected by it.
"There are over 1,500 types of diseases that can be transmitted from animals to humans, including a variety of bacterial, viral and fungal diseases. People having pets are at risk if their pets are not vaccinated," said Dr Bhagavan Reddy, district veterinarian officer for Hyderabad and an employee of the Super Speciality Veterinary Hospital in Narayanguda, the location of a free animal vaccination camp organised on Thursday.
"Yearly vaccination is a must for pets. Regular deworming for pets and maintaining hygiene is very important. People also need to be careful while consuming meat, milk and eggs. If they are not cooked properly, there is a chance of contracting a zoonotic disease," he said.
More than 1,250 vaccinations were given during the drive. Also present was Dr D Venkateswarlu, director of Telangana government's animal husbandry department. The event was one in a series of camps in 100 cities in India conducted by Indian Immunologicals Ltd.