IAR team in Goa kicks off campaign to eradicate rabies from Goa
Thursday 18 October saw the start of International Animal Rescue Goa’s latest crusade to vaccinate the local stray dog population against rabies.
Day one of the operation found six hand-picked members of the Animal Tracks team out early, at an hour when most dogs and people are still snoozing.
The target area was Big Vagator beach where many sterilised stray dogs live in harmony. The rabies booster assignment immediately got off to a fine start with many local residents ready and willing to cooperate with the vaccination drive by helping to round up the dogs they have befriended ready for the IAR team to inoculate them.
Along the way the team also managed to treat four feisty cats, bringing the morning’s total to a resoundingly successful 39 animals vaccinated.
The team intends to continue the camps, firstly concentrating on the beach belt as the high tourist season is about to commence. The objective is eventually to eliminate rabies completely in Goa, to reassure holiday makers that Goa is a safe as well as a beautiful place to visit.
Staff at IAR’s Animal Tracks rescue centre in Assagao expressed their gratitude to companies Virbac and Pfizer for their generous donation of vaccine for the project. Also Dr Chote Khol who kindly gave 100 vaccines. Also last but not least Dr Joy deSouza who is currently raising funds out in Australia to buy more vaccines so that the disease can be eradicated and eventually Goa can become completely rabies free.
The Navhind Times ran an article on the vaccination camp on 24 October, explaining that it was just the first step in a campaign intended eventually to eliminate rabies from Goa completely.