Students urged to avoid strays amid rabies cases

Posted on 16 Jan 2024
Source of News: The Star (Andy Chua)

Dr Siong (seated, centre) with participants of the talk in Sibu.Dr Siong (seated, centre) with participants of the talk in Sibu.

STUDENTS have been reminded to stay away from strays as they may be infected with rabies.

Veterinary Services Department (DVS) Sibu division chief Dr Siong Jing Jing said as many students tended to interact with such animals, rabies awareness needed to be raised.

“When encountering abandoned or stray animals, avoid approaching them.

“Inform adults if a stray animal is behaving strangely so that appropriate measures can be taken,” she said at a rabies awareness event held at SK Sentosa.

The talk, organised by Sibu Municipal Council (SMC) in collaboration with DVS Sarawak, was attended by some 80 students, parents and teachers.

Dr Siong also advised the public to send their pets for regular vaccinations against rabies.

“It is everyone’s responsibility to prevent rabies and this can be done by not letting pets roam freely outside the house,” she said.

Between Jan 1 and Dec 13 last year, 18 cases of humans infected with rabies were recorded in Sarawak.

Of those, five were recorded in Sibu, followed by Serian (four), Kuching (four), Bintulu (three), and Samarahan (two).

Since the 2017 declaration of rabies as endemic in Sarawak, up to last December, there have been 73 cases, including 66 fatal ones. — By ANDY CHUA