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Multifactorial Complexity and Zoonotic Aspects of Dog-Mediated Human Rabies in Pakistan
Saira Afzal1, Mehreen Nasir1, Muhammad Nasir Bhaya2, Khunsa Junaid1, Amber Arshad1, Muhammad Zeeshan Raza3, Muhammad Amjad Ali4, Waqas Ahmad5* and Sandul Yasobant6

1Department of Community Medicine, King Edward Medical University, Lahore, Pakistan; 2Department of Pathology, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, Afyon Kocatepe University, Afyonkarahisar, Türkiye; 3Department of Pathology, University of Veterinary and Animal Sciences, Lahore, Jhang Campus, Jhang, Pakistan; 4Department of Clinical Sciences, Faculty of Veterinary Sciences, Bahauddin Zakariya University, Multan, Pakistan; 5Department of Clinical Sciences, University of Veterinary and Animal Sciences, Lahore, Narowal Campus, Narowal, Pakistan; 6Centre for One Health Education, Research and Development (COHERD), Indian Institute of Public Health Gandhinagar (IIPHG), Gandhinagar, India
*Corresponding author:


Rabies, a viral illness classified as a neglected tropical disease by the World Health Organization (WHO), causes thousands of people to die annually, primarily in underprivileged communities of Africa and Asia. In the context of a single health framework, one of the primary objectives of this literature review is to examine the major factors and challenges that maintain the endemic status of dog-mediated human rabies in Pakistan. Rabies-endemic countries have an imperative need to work on preventive strategies to lessen the burden of this terrible disease as per guidelines of World Organization for Animal Health (WOAH) and WHO. Lack of public awareness, free-roaming dogs, and cold chain mismanagement of vaccinations are the 3 most significant factors contributing to the increasing number of dog bite injuries and suspected rabies cases in animals and humans. To control dog-mediated rabies, Pakistan must initiate and strongly support a national One Health project, a subsidized supply of human and animal rabies vaccine in public hospitals, and designated rabies prevention centers at an affordable cost. People should be educated regarding responsible pet ownership and follow-up of basic preventive measures. Empowerment of labs equipped with surveillance systems are also additionally required to strengthen rabies control and prevention activities at least in regional levels. This article gives valuable information for scholars and policymakers who wish to comprehend why this disease remains endemic due to multiplex interplay of zoonotic, medical, and anthropological risk factors and transmission chains in animal and human sectors through viral reservoirs. Achieving the 'Zero By 2030' goal in Pakistan requires joint immediate action from the government, society, and all health departments at regional, provincial, and national level..

To Cite This Article: Afzal S, Nasir M, Bhaya MN, Junaid K, Arshad A, Raza MZ, Ali MA, Ahmad W and Yasobant S, 2022. Multifactorial complexity and zoonotic aspects of dog-mediated human rabies in Pakistan. Pak Vet J, 42(4): 445-452.


ISSN 0253-8318 (Print)
ISSN 2074-7764 (Online)