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Killer Rabies Disease Hits Sheema District

The outbreak has seen four villages in two Sub Counties put under serious surveillance that include, including Kyabigo, Kigaba 1&2 in Kasaana Sub County, Buraro, Omurusindura, and Rubaare 1& 2 in Kitagata Sub County.
Joel Nabaasa the district animal husbandry production officer

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Sheema district has been put on high alert following an outbreak of deadly rabies.

The disease has seen four villages in two Sub Counties put under serious surveillance that include, including Kyabigo, Kigaba 1&2 in Kasaana Sub County, Buraro, Omurusindura, and Rubaare 1& 2 in Kitagata Sub County.

Joel Nabaasa the district animal husbandry production officer, says the incident was first noticed at Kitagata Farm Institute on Monday where a cow with all signs and symptoms of rabies died and since then two other cows and three goats’ have died.

He says they are surprised by the outbreak since they had done the annual vaccination in dogs and cats.

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Nabaasa says a sample of a brain was collected from a cow that died at Kitagata Farm Institute after it had developed rabies signs like hypersalivation, aggression and bellowing, and submitted to the National animal disease diagnostic and Epidemiology centre in Entebbe for confirmation and the results from the Lab returned positive thus confirming the outbreak of rabies in the district.

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He, however, says rabies is known in dogs and cats but the latest outbreak in farm animals has prompted the district authorities to put on alert the health department which has also informed all health centre In-charges.

All mammals are susceptible to rabies virus is which is a fatal viral zoonosis caused by Lyssavirus causing acute inflammation of the brain.

Dr Joseph Amanya the Sheema District Veterinary Officer says the disease is considered to be 100% fatal and a bite from an affected vector is the common cause of infection.

He says humans should worry because the virus can enter the body through lacerations on the skin, mucous membranes, eyes and other orifices once a person or animal begins showing signs and symptoms of rabies, the disease nearly always causes death.

Nabaasa says currently they have no vaccines in the district noting that they have submitted a request for the vaccines from the ministry.

Anthony Tumuhimbise the Sheema District surveillance focal officer says they were informed by the Production and Veterinary Department about the outbreak and says they have started to closely monitor the people who lost their animals.

He says humans also present the same signs and symptoms as animals and the only way of prevention is by anti-rabies vaccination.

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Cue out: …suspecting such diseases.”//

Tumuhimibise says all health center in-charges have been asked to stay on alert in case of any human case they isolate them and report to higher authorities.

David Mugabo the farm manager Kitagata Farm Institute says they are monitoring other animals and as humans they are keeping a distance from the animals and allow only a person wearing protective gear to attend to the cows.

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