Dr Godwin Abonyi, immediate past President, Nigerian Veterinary Medical Association (NVMA) has urged Nigerians to ensure their animals and pets are vaccinated to curb zoonotic diseases.
Abonyi made the call on Saturday in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in commemoration of the World Veterinary Day (WVD) in Abuja.
He added that appropriate vaccination would also prevent animals from falling ill and transmitting it to human beings.
The WVD, with the theme “Value of Vaccination”, is commemorated every last Saturday of April to highlight the role of veterinarians in animal and public health.
Abonyi explained that vaccination of all pets, especially dogs and cats, against rabies would eventually put an end to human rabies.
According to him, a lot of animals carry germs and virus that are harmful to man and only vaccination can prevent transmission to human.
“If animals are duly vaccinated they will be blocked or prevented from transmitting diseases to the human population.
“Both veterinarians and the public at large, if you must rear animals, either as pet or food, ensure that you duly vaccinate them to protect them from infectious diseases.
“By so doing, the cost of keeping those animals is cheaper for you because prevention they say is cheaper and better than cure,“ he said.
Abonyi added that vaccination would also eliminate the issue of antimicrobial resistance that have been a major challenge in the country.
He said: “If we all embrace vaccination there will be no need to treat animals with antibiotics and antimicrobial because the problem of resistance will not arise again.”
Speaking on the day, Abonyi noted that WVD was set aside in 2000 by the World Veterinary Association to highlight and promote the lifesaving work performed by veterinarians around the globe.