7 villagers bitten by rabies-infected dogs in Tabanan

A Bali dog for illustration purposes only. Photo: Pexels/Alexandra Johansson
A Bali dog for illustration purposes only. Photo: Pexels/Alexandra Johansson

Seven people were reportedly bitten by rabies-infected dogs in Dauh Peken Village, Tabanan Regency in the latest batch of new cases involving the deadly virus on the island. 

Tabanan’s Animal Control Agency Head Gde Eka Parta Ariana confirmed that the incidents occurred last week and out of the seven victims, only five have checked themselves to a local healthcare facility and received rabies shots. 

“We hope for the two other victims to immediately report to the nearest healthcare facilities and get vaccinated,” he said

The official added that the agency had tracked three stray dogs in the area, though it has yet to be confirmed if they were the ones who bit the seven villagers. Nonetheless, the three dogs had been put down as they were suspected to have recently come in close contact with other rabies-infected dogs.

“The three dogs we already eliminated. [At least] one dog was suspected to [have been infected with rabies],” added Parta Ariana.

According to the Tabanan administration, there are four “red zones” in the regency when it comes to rabies risk. Recent rabies-infected dog bites occurred before the administration’s mass anti-rabies vaccination program commenced this year. Under the program, 71,062 dogs are scheduled to receive the shot. 

Rabies has been a major problem for around two decades in Bali, leading to the occasional cullings of stray dogs. Ironically, it has been documented that some of the culled dogs have been vaccinated against rabies.

Read also – Who killed the Berawa beach dogs?

In Karangasem, which is located about 80 kilometers (50 miles) from Tabanan, 41 people have been bitten by rabies-infected dogs this year as of April.

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