Srinagar, Sep 28: Experts today voiced their concern over the menace of stray dogs and the rise in the number of dog bite cases over the past many years.
The experts were speaking during a webinar conducted by Department of Community Medicine Government Medical College (GMC) Srinagar.
The theme of the programme was Rabies- Facts not Fear organized in collaboration with Srinagar Municipal Corporation (SMC) and SKUAST’s faculty of Veterinary sciences ad Animal Husbandry Shuhama under aegis of Indian association of preventive and social medicine (IAPSM), Indian public health association (IPHA), Association for prevention and control of rabies in India (ARCRI) and consortium against rabies (CAR).
Speaking at the occasion, Principal and Dean GMC Srinagar Samia Rashid who was the chief guest said the hospital was receiving over 5000 to 6000 cases every year which was cause of concern for everyone.
“We have taken up the matter with Commissioner SMC many times and requested him to take some measures to control the menace. The menace of stray dogs should be controlled in the community particularly in the hospital premises,” Principal GMC Srinagar said.
“Rabies is fatal but 100 percent preventable. So it should be managed properly,” she said.
Earlier in his address, HoD Community Medicine GMC Srinagar, Dr. S. Muhammad Salim Khan said people should run away from myths and fears of rabies and should understand the facts.
“Cases of dog bites are a big burden on health setup. The issue of dog bite cases should be addressed in J&K particularly in Srinagar,” he said.
He said the Anti-Rabies Clinic SMHS hospital received more than 5000 cases annually and there should be a proper management of dog bite cases.
“We should work together to know the facts of Rabies rather than believing in myths and fear,” he said.
Dr. Waseem Raja who was the organizer of the event while giving an overview of Rabies day was created to raise awareness and advocate for Rabies elimination globally.
“Rabies day is designed to unite all people, organizations and stakeholders against Rabies. This year’s theme was selected with a mission to raise awareness about the impact of the human and animal rabies, how easy it is to prevent and how to eliminate the main global sources,” DrWaseem Raja said.
He said there was a need to work together to ensure that there is no death due to dog bite by 2030. “We should learn facts not fear and use facts instead of fear. We should educate ourselves about it and share the knowledge with others,” he said.
Veterinary municipal officer of SMC, DrJaved Ahmad Rather in his address spoke about the initiative taken by the SMC to control the dog menace and the bottlenecks in facing the challenge.
He spoke about the initiative of dog sterilization and Animal Birth Control taken by the SMC and the future plans to further enhance the methods to curb the dog menace.
Assistant Professor, faculty of Veterinary science and Animal Husbandry department, SKUAST ShuhamaDrMudasir Ali Rather made a powerpoint presentation on symbiotic relationship between humans and animals and role in reducing burden of dog bites and zoonotic diseases including rabies.