By Jel Santos
Around 25, 000 pets from 21 barangays in Makati City were given free anti-rabies vaccine by the City Veterinary Services Office (VSO) from January 1 to June 30, 2019.
Meanwhile, a total of 1, 000 stray animals were rescued by the VSO.
The VSO also said it implanted microchips to 913 pets, bringing up the total number of micro-chipped pets to 5,909 since the project was launched in October, 2017.
Dr. Ma. Katherina Mangahas, VSO head, said they had vaccinated 23,720 pets from 21 barangays in the city and provided free spay and castration services to 147 pets under its Animal Health Program.
Mayor Abigail “Abby” Binay urged residents to be responsible pet owners and have their pets immunized and micro-chipped for free by VSO personnel who visit their barangays on scheduled dates.
“We ask Makati residents to cooperate with our VSO teams conducting house-to-house visits to give free anti-rabies shots and microchip household pets. Rabies is deadly, and it is up to you to protect your families and communities against it,” she said.
In Southeast Asia, Makati City was the first local government unit to implement citywide pet microchipping in October, 2017.
The microchip, according to the local government, has a 15-digit code readable with a microchip scanner.
“When the code is entered into the database, it reveals the owner’s name as well as the pet’s vaccination records. Aside from facilitating the identification of pets and their owners, the program helps owners and bite victims avoid spending for redundant or unnecessary rabies vaccination,” it said.
Mangahas said her office will conduct a Rabies Awareness Campaign in all public schools in the city this month.
As such, she said they will also hold a livelihood training on pet grooming to provide an affordable pet grooming option for pet owners, and a source of additional income for residents.
The VSO will also hold a community assembly in various barangays to promote Responsible Pet Ownership among residents, she added.