Baguio plans to require microchip implants in pet dogs
BAGUIO, Philippines – Baguio used to be the place to eat dogs. But because of frequent raids brought by the Animal Welfare Act, dog restaurants have become very rare.
And now, Baguio wants to change its image as a land of dogeaters.
And don't call stray dogs "aspins" here.
"We hope to eliminate 'askal' or asong kalye in Baguio and change them to a new brand of 'asbag' or asong Baguio," city veterinarian Brigit Piok told Rappler.
Piok said the city plans to decrease its stray dog population by forcing owners to implant microchips in their asbags.
She said they will soon require all dog owners in the city to register their dogs for the microchip implant program.
Piok said the microchip will include the dog’s name, breed, age, vaccination, name of the owner, address, and more.
“This is important to identify violators who will answer for whatever violations, if any," she said.
She said the city veterinarian survey conducted in 2016 recorded 60,000 dogs in the city. She admitted that despite the neutering project of the city veterinary office, they do not have data on whether the canine population has decreased or increased since 2016.
Piok said that dog biting is the number 3 cause of morbidity in humans, according to the Health Services Office.
She noted a zero case of rabies in humans and animals in the city despite cases of rabies in neighboring municipalities.
“Our program is to reduce dog bites in the city, especially those caused by stray dogs, and to vaccinate at least 80% of the local dog population,” she said.
Spike in rabies cases in Sablan
Meanwhile, in nearby Sablan town in Benguet, officials there declared the municipality under a state of emergency due to a spike in rabies cases.
Town records showed that 43 persons were recorded to have been exposed to the virus, said Sablan Vice Mayor Arthur Baldo.
“There were 3 confirmed cases of rabid dogs in particular at Poblacion as reported by the municipal agriculture office and the rural health unit as confirmed by the regional animal disease diagnostic laboratory,” according to the Sablan council resolution 19-142 approved during a special meeting on July 24. – Rappler.com
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