Brazil: More than 24 million doses of anti-rabies vaccines for dogs and cats distributed


by NewsDesk Lord, save her

Although the term zoonosis is not often heard in everyday life, it defines a very common situation: the transmission of infectious diseases between vertebrate animals and humans. Rabies is one of the most common infections worldwide. Due to a virus transmitted after accidents involving different species of mammals, the disease can be fatal, and vaccination has proven, for more than a century, to be the most effective method of adaptation.

Photo/Robert Herrmann

In 2022, the Ministry of Health distributed 24,084,650 doses of vaccine against the infection to immunize dogs and cats across the country. Immunizations account data delivered between January and September of this year. Minas Gerais, Bahia and Ceará were the places that received the most doses: 4.4 million, 2.4 and 2.1 million, respectively.

The vaccine is distributed as requested by the country for use in vaccination campaigns, as well as routine applications and necessary concentration barriers when there are cases of rabies in animals and/or humans. The campaign takes place over twelve months, but has a special focus on the second half. To plan the quantity distributed, each federal unit is required to estimate the numbers of dogs and cats and the expected date of start and end of local campaigns.

But why is animal vaccination considered a public health measure?

Protecting pets is a strategy for controlling rabies in animals, as it prevents the cycle of contamination for humans. Therefore, the disease is jointly managed by the Ministry of Health and the Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock and Supply.

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The two files share information and promote actions to monitor disease transmission in dogs, cats, and wild animals, such as bats, wild dogs, foxes, cattle, and horses.

In the case of dogs and cats in particular, the vaccination strategy has proven successful in preventing the spread of the disease. This is because these animals, whose population exceeds tens of millions across the country, are responsible for most post-exposure anti-rabies care.

Immunization of individuals of these two species is part of the National Rabies Prevention Program (PNPR), established in 1973. In the historical series from 1999 to 2022, Brazil went from 1,200 dogs positive for rabies, in 1999, to two cases of rabies In dogs through May 2022 they are all identified as different species of wildebeest.

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