Sunday July 03, 2022

Dogs on a biting spree

May 24, 2022

Incidents of dog bites have increased alarmingly with hundreds of cases reported annually in the city and its suburbs, officials said. It is alarming that the drive against mad dogs has stopped. The concerned authorities are fast asleep over the issue.

Stray dogs in Chatian Hatian, Pul Shah Nazar, and Millat Colony bit two-year-old Nazar Naqvi, six-year-old Arifa, and four-year-old Aiman respectively while they were playing outside their homes.There is hardly any street in the city where stray dogs are not present. They roam around the butchers’ shops, chicken shops, catering shops, and even wedding halls across the city.

Mazhar Abbas, a doctor at an infectious disease hospital says, “The hospital recorded 110 patients in the last four months. They were given anti-rabies vaccination after dog bites report.”

“The scale of stray dog menace in the city can easily be assessed from the fact that when I return home from my office, I find 14 to 15 stray dogs roaming in our street. In the darkness of night they look more dangerous,” says Ejaz Zaidi from Arya Mohalla.

“Whenever I was bitten by a stray dog, my mother applied haldi, oil, or red chilies on the wound. However, it always added to skin irritation. When she took me to a doctor he said, “You should have washed the scratched or bitten area under running water for 15 to 20 minutes,” says Mushtaq Mehdi from Dhoke Elahi Bakhsh.

“There are many myths and misconceptions attached to the rabies disease, which only aggravate the problem. The first misconception is that rabies can be caused by dog bites only. It can be caused by the bite of a cat, monkey, or any other animal. Bites from pet animals, too, can cause rabies,” says Dr. Hasrat Ali from Dhoke Kala Khan.

Dr. Ishtiaq Abbas from Jamia Masjid Road says, “Animal bites can be categorized into three forms. In the first category, where an animal has only licked, it does not require much attention. The second category, where the animal has only scratched and no blood has come out requires an anti-rabies vaccine.

“In the third category, where the bite has caused blood to flow out, requires injection of serum along with the anti-rabies vaccine. The serum is a ready-to-use antibody. Limited injections are provided which expire in three to four months; the patient has to order a dog bite injection from the open market.

“If an animal has only licked, it does not require much attention. When the animal has only scratched and no blood has come out, it requires an anti-rabies vaccine.”“Rabies if untreated is 100 per cent lethal. One should keep a safe distance from animals and consult a physician immediately in case of a bite,” says Dr. Soulat Rizvi from Chhota Bazaar Saddar.