“Every day, thousands of dogs are violently killed because of rabies. Dragged through streets, electrocuted, poisoned or gassed – culling is a painful death”
Global charity World Animal Protection has marked a major milestone, with one million rabies vaccinations given as part of its Better lives for dogs campaign. The global campaign was launched in 2011 to protect dogs, safeguard communities, and stop the spread of the disease.
“Due to fear and a lack of education, communities can see dogs as a health risk,” said Josey Kitson, Executive Director at World Animal Protection Canada in Toronto. “It is a tragic reality that thousands of people around the world continue to die from rabies each year, even though it’s almost 100% preventable. Innocent dogs also suffer as a result.”
There are 700 million dogs in the world today. Many of them are unwanted, unhealthy and unvaccinated. Fear of bites and rabies means that millions are killed every year.
World Animal Protection has been leading the way to stop the killing. Working with local governments, the global charity has performed one million vaccinations for dogs in Kenya, Zanzibar, China, Indonesia, the Philippines and Bangladesh.
Dogs are not the enemy
“This campaign lets communities know that dogs are not the enemy,” continued Kitson. “Through vaccination and education, we aren’t just eliminating rabies, we’re eliminating the fear of rabies. People understand that dogs can be a valued part of every community if we take responsibility and protect them.”
High-profile Canadians agree. Ambassadors including TV personality Aliya-Jasmine Sovani, pro athlete Mike Bradwell, comedian Carla Collins, super-model Liisa Winkler, fashion designer David Dixon, news anchorKarman Wong, Sportscaster Gurdeep Ahluwalia, eco and pet expert Candice Batista, meteorologist Anthony Farnell—along with Storm the Weather dog and Instagram superstar Oliver the dog—have supported the campaign to help spread the word.
“I’m so honoured to be a part of World Animal Protection’s Better lives for dogs campaign,” said Carla Collins. “My dogs mean the world to me and if I can help stop the suffering of other dogs around the world, it is something I feel compelled to do.”
“Reaching the milestone of one million vaccinations is an incredible achievement,” said Liisa Winkler. “I’m supporting this campaign to help World Animal Protection reach a million more.”
All dogs deserve to live without fear and suffering, and we can all help by supporting responsible dog ownership and vaccination. World Animal Protection’s next goal is to improve the lives of 50 million dogs by 2020. – CNW