Rabies – Peru

The Departmental Veterinary Medical College of Lima warned that there is a risk that canine rabies could be reintroduced in the capital.

This situation could be due to the weakness of the epidemiological surveillance system in the capital, a vital tool to identify the increase in cases. Last year [2020], in Lima only, 11 samples were received and processed for the diagnosis of rabies, when in the capital, there are about 2 million dogs.

This situation is complicated if we take into account that, in 2020, the Ministry of Health detected 24 cases of canine rabies in the country, of which 20 corresponded to Arequipa and 4 to Puno. Meanwhile, in January of this year [2021] alone, 10 cases of rabies were reported in Arequipa. This highlights the high risk of human rabies cases in Arequipa and canine rabies in other cities of the country, as well as in Lima.

Veterinarians are recommended to send samples to a nearby health facility or to the Zoonosis Control Health Center (formerly the Anti-Rabies Center), located in Cercado de Lima.
Rabies is a viral disease that causes inflammation of the brain in humans and other mammals. Early symptoms can include fever and tingling at the site of exposure. These symptoms are followed by one or more of the following symptoms: violent movements, uncontrolled excitement, fear of water, an inability to move parts of the body, confusion, and ultimately loss of consciousness. Once symptoms appear, the result is nearly always death.

The time period between contracting the disease and the start of symptoms is usually one to three months, but can vary from less than one week to more than one year.

Rabies is present in more than 150 countries and on all continents but Antarctica. It is very important to have your pets vaccinated and avoid contact with wild animals.

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