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Oral vaccines could help curb rabies spread - study
Researchers hope the study will help support the introduction of the oral rabies vaccination in India as an additional tool to eradicate the disease.

Three times as many dogs can be vaccinated each day

An oral rabies vaccine could provide a more efficient and cost-effective method of rabies control in countries with large stray dog populations, according to new research.

Writing in the journal Vaccine X, researchers assessed the effectiveness of oral vaccinations on dogs in Goa, India. Teams on mopeds searched for free-roaming dogs and delivered empty capsules hidden inside dog food.

The team found that three times as many dogs could be vaccinated each day when oral vaccination is combined with the current method. Each day, the team managed to reach 35 dogs, compared to just nine using the catch-vaccinate-release technique.

The study was conducted by experts from Mission Rabies, the Worldwide Veterinary Service and the University of Edinburgh.  

Some 59,000 people die annually from rabies and a further 29 million require costly treatment after being by bitten by dogs in countries where the disease is rife.

Researchers hope the study will help support the introduction of the oral rabies vaccination in India as an additional tool to eradicate the disease.

Mission Rabies founder Dr Luke Gamble, said: “Rabies has a massive impact on societies, not only from the disease but also from the fear that results. In many parts of the world, reaction to rabies cases fuels inhumane mass culls of dogs, which does nothing to combat the virus. We are showing that there is another way that benefits dogs, people and nations.”
 
Professor Mark Bronsvoort, of the University of Edinburgh’s Roslin Institute, said: “This kind of operational research is crucial in pushing the boundaries and finding a solution to the age-old problem of rabies. Dog populations vary, so it is essential that methods are evaluated methodically. We are excited that this approach could have far-reaching benefits.”

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Vets asked to opt-in to Scottish SPCA fostering programme

News Story 1
 The Scottish SPCA is encouraging veterinary practices to opt into its new fostering programme, by agreeing to register foster animals when approached by one of the foster carers.

The programme goes live in August 2021, and will help to rehabilitate animals under the Scottish SPCA's care until they are able to be properly re-homed. The programme will help the animals to receive care and attention in a stable and happy home environment, as some animals do not cope with a rescue and re-homing centre environment as well as others.

Specific information for veterinary practices on the new programme can be found at www.scottishspca.org/veterinarysurgeons 

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Webinar provides insight into old age pets

A new webinar providing insights into the BSAVA PetSavers Old Age Pets citizen science project is now available free of charge to its members via the BSAVA Library

The webinar presents an exclusive insight into the research process and progression of the study, which aims to help veterinary professionals and owners provide the best care for their senior dogs.

It also discusses the study's research methods, the researchers' personal interests in this area of study, and how they envisage the findings being used to create a guidance tool to improve discussions between vets and owners about their ageing dogs.