KUCHING (May 5): The Department of Veterinary Services Sarawak (DVSS) is now providing free anti-rabies vaccine for dogs and is conducting mass vaccinations in phases.
According to Minister of Food Industry, Commodities and Regional Development Dato Sri Dr Stephen Rundi Utom, the Immune Belt Enforcement Team (IBET) has embarked on village-to-village vaccinations along the border.
“This year alone, 35 out of 173 animal samples taken state-wide tested positive with rabies. Thus far, around 10,000 dogs have been vaccinated.
“Seven deaths were recorded out of nine rabies cases to date,” he said.
Dr Rundi said that since 2017, the Sarawak Health Department has registered 62 rabies cases of which 55 were fatal cases.
He said that the situation is now serious and seeking immediate treatment should be made compulsory for those affected.
“This means people must be careful and ensure their pet dogs receive anti-rabies vaccine. If you have been bitten or scratched by a dog, immediately seek treatment at the nearest hospital. Late action may result in death,” he said.
Dr Rundi also said that eradicating rabies is a shared responsibility, and appealed to the public to cooperate in stopping the spread of rabies in Sarawak and ensure their dogs are vaccinated annually.