This country may soon vaccinate 29 million pets against Covid-19: Report

Reported By:DNA  Web Team| Edited By: DNA Web Team |Source: IANS |Updated: Jan 19, 2022, 09:55 PM IST

According to reports in the media, an Australian veterinarian is urging governmental organisations to vaccinate the country’s pets against global pandemic with a Russian-developed vaccine for animals. The Australian Pesticides and Veterinary Medicines Authority are yet to issue clearance to Dr Sam Kovac of Southern Cross Vets in Sydney. According to the Daily Mail, Kovac said he had a ‘good’ meeting with such an upper official in the authority regarding the matter of needing to spend a $105,000 initial deposit to have the drug certified.

“They put me in touch with getting an alternative permit. So it`s looking like, fast tracking is probably the wrong word, but there is an alternative method that we`re looking at to get this approved now,” he told Daily Mail Australia.

“It`s pretty exciting. It`s looking like it`s going to happen,” he added. Australia has about 5.1 million dogs and 3.8 million cats as pets. “You don`t need to import a million vaccines to start off with. If there is interest from a couple of thousand pet owners then we could start with that,” Kovac said.

“In Russia, most of the work is the vets doing their consult and administering it.”

“It`s a very simple vaccine and they could manufacture 24 hours a day if there is the demand for it here. But the first step is to get it approved,” he noted. Despite many people thinking otherwise, Kovac said pets definitely can get Covid, but there is no evidence they can pass it on to humans.

“But there`s plenty of evidence from overseas that dogs, cats, ferrets, mink can contract Covid-19, the same virus that affects us, and in some cases it can be lethal and cause all the same problems that we get,” he said. The Russian pet vaccine has been approved in Japan, Brazil and other South American countries, the report said. Elsewhere, hamsters from a pet store in Hong Kong have tested positive for Covid-19.

To curb a outbreak, the Hong Kong`s government has planned to cull thousands of small animals including hamsters, chinchillas, rabbits and guinea pigs. The World Health Organization has also that the risk of animals reinfecting humans with SARS-CoV-2, the coronavirus behind Covid-19, remained low.

“We understand there are a number of species that can be infected with SARS-CoV-2,” the WHO`s Covid-19 technical lead, Maria Van Kerkhove, told a virtual media briefing on Tuesday. “There`s the possibility (of) a reverse zoonosis (that) goes from humans back to animals, and then it`s possible for the animals to reinfect humans. That risk remains low,” she said.

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