India: Now, even pets have to be vaccinated to enter Goa
Dogs and cats have to be vaccinated against rabies to enter the state.
Holidaymakers from Mumbai, Bangalore or some other city in India who drive down to Goa along with a pet cat or dog must ensure that their pets have been vaccinated for rabies.
“As soon as they enter Goa, they must call the hotline and share their pet’s information and vaccination details,” Dr Marvin Lopes, deputy director, Animal husbandry and veterinary service (AHVS) told the media on Wednesday.
“If their pets are not vaccinated, we will arrange for it free of cost.”
Goa, which launched Mission Rabies a few years ago, has been declared “a rabies-controlled state” because of zero deaths in humans over the past three years due to the rabies virus.
Lopes points out that the department has set up monitoring committees in villages to promote collaboration with animal welfare bodies and to sterilise stray dogs. About a fifth of village administrations have signed MoUs with the government.
Dr Murugan Appupillai, director, Mission Rabies, said the disease was neglected for long and often went unreported with rabies deaths also not being recorded. “After Goa came forward to address this issue, the data was recorded by Mission Rabies and monitored by district-level monitoring committees,” he said.
But people must cooperate, report rabies cases and also learn how to avoid being bitten by dogs, added Appupillai.
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