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Report identifies barriers to vaccination
Comprehensive report reveals much to be done on vaccination
Pet ‘herd immunity’ may be at risk

A recently released report, How to Increase Animal Vaccination, identifies the six major barriers that limit uptake of vaccines around the globe – economic, political, technical and scientific, regulatory, social and perception, and field-use barriers.

The comprehensive report, published by HealthforAnimals, analyses the underlying issues within each barrier and offers 80 clear, actionable recommendations to address them.

It appears that pet vaccination in developed nations is high, but ‘herd immunity’ may be at risk. Companion animal ownership is high in these regions and owners will invest in pet care. As a result, overall vaccination rates are reasonable-to-good; but warning signs are emerging.

In the UK, 25 per cent of dogs have never been vaccinated, and in the US, 17 per cent of owners thought vaccination was unnecessary. There are concerns in Europe and the US that the levels of vaccinated dogs and cats has fallen below the levels necessary for ‘herd immunity’.

Pet vaccination in emerging economies, especially in Asia, is generally negligible. Some vaccination of individually owned pet dogs happens in urban areas. Rabies vaccination campaigns for stray animals also occurs in areas of East Africa and South Asia.

The report concludes that pet owners often make cost-benefit choices based on perceived risk of illness. For example, an owner may decide to vaccinate their dog since it plays with other dogs, but not vaccinate their cat because it only goes into the garden. They set this perceived risk against the cost of an annual vaccination.

In the UK, the BSAVA has confirmed that approximately 25 per cent of dogs and 35 per cent of cats receive no primary vaccination course – the lowest level they have recorded and below ‘herd immunity’ levels.

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AWF Student Grant open for submissions

News Story 1
 Applications are open for the Animal Welfare Foundation (AWF) Student Grant Scheme for innovative research projects designed to impact animal welfare.

Undergraduate and postgraduate students of veterinary science, veterinary nursing, agriculture studies and animal welfare are invited to submit their proposals to undertake research projects next year.

Grants are decided based on the project’s innovation, relevance to topical animal welfare issues and ability to contribute towards raising animal welfare standards. For more information visit  

Click here for more...
News Shorts
SPANA film highlights plight of working animals overseas

Animal welfare charity SPANA (The Society for the Protection of Animals Abroad) has teamed up with Brian Blessed and other famous voices to highlight the plight of working animals overseas.

In a new animated film, the celebrities raise awareness by showing the solidarity of the UK's own working animals on strike. A sniffer dog (Brian Blessed), police horse (Peter Egan) and sheepdog (Deborah Meaden) are shown ignoring their duties and protesting in solidarity with animals in developing countries.

SPANA chef executive Geoffrey Dennis said: "We are so grateful to Deborah, Peter and Brian for lending their voices to our new film, and for speaking up for millions of working animals overseas. SPANA believes that a life of work should not mean a life of suffering, and it is only thanks to people’s generosity and support that we can continue our vital work improving the lives of these animals."