SRINAGAR: Authorities are making a sterilisation centre in the Tengpora area here functional to curb the rising dog menace.
Dr Tawheed Ahmad, SMC Veterinary Officer, told that the centre in Tengpora is going to help in the augmentation of the sterilisation process.
“As of now, we have one sterilisation centre functional in Shuhama (in Ganderbal) where just around 5 to 10 dogs can be sterilized per day, but the centre at Tengpora is big where around 50 dogs can be sterilized per day,” he said.
He said the animal birth control programme is going on here for years but the capacity for sterilization at Shuhama was very low. “The surgeries have been recommended by the World Health Organization (WHO) and later it was adopted by India,” he said.
Dr Tawheed said that sterilisation process is put on a halt during winter as dogs can die due to hypothermia and such things are followed in other parts as well.
The capacity of the Tengpora sterilization centre is 210 dogs per week which will help in curbing the rising canine population.
People from various areas of Srinagar are up in arms against the government for failing” to take concrete steps to curb the dog menace.
The doctors said surgeries of a few dogs per day won’t make any impact on the ground and there is a need for carrying out the sterilisation process at a large scale. They said sterilizing and vaccinating the dogs would effectively control their population, prevent rabies and reduce canine attacks.
An official from the anti-rabies clinic SMHS told KNO that from April 01, 2022 to March 31, 2023, as many as 6,875 bite cases were reported, with most of them from Srinagar.
Giving details, the official said among animal bites in the last year 4,912 animal bite cases were reported from Srinagar at ARC SMHS, 317 from Budgam, 201 from Baramulla, 134 from Kupwara, 168 from Bandipora, 301 from Ganderbal, 221 from Pulwama, 138 from Shopian, 147 from Kulgam, 85 from Anantnag and 231 from other areas.
Providing yearly data on bite cases, he said, “From April 01, 2015, to March 2016, a total of 7, 061 bite cases were reported to ARC SMHS, followed by 5,832 cases from April 2016 to March 2017, 6,802 cases from April 2017 to March 2018, 6,397 cases from April 2018 to March 2019, 6139 cases from April 2019 to March 2020, 4,808 from April 2020 to March 2021, 5,469 from April 2021 to March 2022 and 6,785 from April 2022 to March 2023.
He added 49,383 cases have been registered in anti-rabies clinics from April 2015 to March 2023. Rabies is an invariably fatal viral disease resulting in approximately 59,000 human deaths per year globally, with 95 percent of cases occurring in Africa and Asia.
The only way to prevent a rabies death is vaccination of an animal bite victim. In Kashmir, the burden and characteristics of dog bites are not routinely captured by the health system in place—(KNO)