Aweil town residents call for extermination of stray dogs

Some residents of Aweil town have called for the extermination of stray dogs that they say have gone wild by attacking people.

The calls were triggered by reports that at least 7 people were attacked by stray dogs in Maper West last week.

They say that there are several staggering dogs loitering the streets of Aweil town. Some of the dogs, they say, could be carrying rabies.

Rabies is usually spread through an animal bite. Animals most likely to spread rabies include dogs, bats, coyotes, foxes, skunks, and raccoons.

Some of the residents of the town who spoke to Akol Yam said they are concern for the safety of their children who encounter dogs on their way to school.

“We ask the town municipality to kill dogs in the streets and vaccinate dogs at people’s homes,” a resident said.

Some residents also said the cost for anti-rabies treatment is high.

They say the vaccine cost 50,000 South Sudanese Pounds at private clinics. It is reportedly not available in the public health centers.

Aweil town Mayor, Garang Deng Diing said he is yet to receive reports of people being bitten by stray dogs.

“What I know, many people keep dogs at home without vaccinating them. We need the community to keep them at home and give them their needs. But my office will send out a team to investigate the matter before I take action,” he said.

In March this year, the State Ministry of Animal Resources and Fisheries vaccinated more one thousands dogs in the state.

One of the most well known symptoms of rabies in dogs is foaming at the mouth. Once an infected dog bits a person, symptoms may include fever, headache, excess salivation, muscle spasms, paralysis, and mental confusion.

When the symptoms appear, it’s nearly always fatal. A vaccine can prevent infection.