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Rabies vaccination programme gets underway in Kabul
Dr Mohammadzai DVM (right) during the first day of the vaccination programme.

Local vets working to end the culling of free-roaming dogs

Animal welfare charity Mayhew International has begun its first ever mass rabies vaccination programme in Kabul, Afghanistan.

In January, Mayhew negotiated a landmark agreement with authorities to end the culling of free-roaming dogs in Kabul. Since then, Mayhew’s Afghanistan country director, Dr Abdul-Jalil Mohammadzai DVM, has been setting up the charity’s NGO facilities and working to implement a long-term and sustainable animal welfare strategy.

The mass rabies vaccination programme began on Sunday (6 August) and will cover the 16 main districts of Kabul. Local staff, including vets and other veterinary professionals, have been employed by the charity to help deliver the programme and will work as vaccinators, surveyors and data recorders.

Mayhew has decribed the programmes so far as a ‘huge success’, generating lots of interest from the locals and a ‘good start’ to their target of vaccinating up to 15,000 dogs.

“Our mass rabies vaccination programme is very much welcomed by the government and the people in Kabul. We presently have a team of 16 staff who are working on the field and for the initial days, a small team from Ranchi in India. Everybody is very supportive,” commented Dr Mohammadzai.

“We believe that educating communities is the key to spreading the word about rabies prevention, safe interaction with community dogs, compassion towards animals and the benefits of neutering.”

Mathew International provides international veterinary training and works overseas to find sustainable solutions to the free-roaming dog and cat populations in Afghanistan, Georgia, Russia and India.

The organisation states that it will continue working with authorities to reach their goal of creating a safer and more secure environment for both the people and animals of Kabul.

Image (C) Mayhew International

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Newborn okapi named after Meghan Markle

News Story 1
 An endangered okapi recently born at London Zoo has been named Meghan - after Prince Harry’s fiancé Meghan Markle - in celebration of the upcoming royal wedding. Okapis are classed as endangered in the wild, having suffered ongoing declines since 1995. Zookeeper Gemma Metcalf said: “We’re very pleased with how mother and baby are doing. Oni is being very attentive, making sure she regularly licks her clean and keeping a watchful eye over Meghan as she sleeps.” Image © ZSL London Zoo  

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