In 2015, the first Laikipia Rabies Vaccination Campaign (LRVC) vaccinated a total of 821 domestic dogs and cats. That number and coverage has since increased with last year’s efforts reaching over 9,000 dogs and cats in the county.
The 2018 LRVC plans to widen its scope reaching out to more communities by returning to areas where vaccination has previously taken place and expanding coverage into new communities to get the numbers to 15,000. Is it possible? Absolutely!
We, as Laikipians, can work together to eradicate this deadly virus. With dedicated partnerships with the local residents, County Government and LRVC partners, we can contribute to making Laikipia, Kenya’s first rabies free county.
The LRVC, in partnership with the Laikipia County Government, will run for 8 weekends in the months of October and November. The campaign’s focus is in rural communities, which have the greatest risk of rabies exposure as well as the least access to rabies vaccination and treatment. However, this year the campaign will also include semi-urban centres with relatively large dog populations, such as Nanyuki.
In Kenya, the majority of annual rabies-related deaths occur where vaccination programs are limited or non-existent, generally where low income communities reside. In Laikipia specifically, we know that there are significant numbers of undocumented rabies cases in domestic animals, wildlife and humans annually.
If we take informed steps, we can eradicate rabies from domestic dog populations in Laikipia County in an effort towards accomplishing Kenya’s 2030 vision of being an entirely rabies free nation. We will however not be able to reach this goal without your help.
How You Can Help
Your support is crucial to our efforts. The number of students, vets and community members who are always willing to volunteer is always encouraging but we do need more financial support.
The 2018 LRVC, is predicted to cost approximately Ksh 3.5M (USD $35, 000). With this money the campaign will be able to cover the costs of:
- Essential medical supplies,
- Education programmes
Contributions can be directed to;
Mpala Research Trust
Standard Chartered Bank, Nanyuki
MPESA Paybill Number: 310066
Account Number: LRVC 2018
Online donations at; https://give.classy.org/LRVC
For more information, please contact James Ngatia
Rabies is an almost invariably fatal disease for both humans and animals. It has been shown that mass vaccination of domestic dog is the most effective way to end the Rabies virus cycle in-step towards eradication. Vaccination of domestic animals therefore is a critical step that we should all participate in for the protection of domestic animals, our already fragile wildlife population and most importantly, public health.
Together, we can eradicate rabies in Laikipia!