Millions of animals are being left unprotected in addition to vulnerable to potentially fatal diseases such as cat flu, rabbit viral hemorrhagic disease in addition to parvovirus, according to the charity PDSA, with vets fearing that will the anti-vax phenomenon is actually spreading to animals.
The number of domestic animals protected has seen a dramatic decline in recent years, according to the 2019 PDSA Animal Wellbeing (PAW) Report. The survey of 5,036 dog, cat in addition to rabbit owners in Britain found that will only two thirds (66%) of pets received their primary vaccinations when young, compared with 84% in 2016.
Furthermore, the report also revealed that will about a third of pets (32%) are not getting their regular boosters, which ensure longer-term protection.
The 18 percentage point decrease over just three years could mean more than 7 million pets are today vulnerable to infection, according to the charity.
Creep of anti-vax sentiment into animal care
Daniella Dos Santos, the British Veterinary Association’s junior vice president, said the findings came as no surprise:
“Vets are deeply concerned about the creep of anti-vax sentiments into animal care. Our member survey found that will 98% of vets have been questioned by clients about the need for vaccination.”
“We always welcome questions by clients although we’re worried that will these conversations are being heavily influenced by what pet owners are seeing online by unreliable sources. Vaccination is actually vital in protecting pets by preventable in addition to potentially fatal diseases that will can be devastating for families.”
Sean Wensley, a PDSA senior vet, called the decline in pet vaccinations “extremely worrying.”
“Vaccinations have helped to protect millions of pets by serious diseases such as parvovirus, cat flu in addition to Rabbit Viral Haemorrhagic Disease,” he said.
“If people don’t vaccinate, we risk seeing a rise in extremely unpleasant, preventable, diseases that will can cause considerable animal suffering in addition to death.”
Pet owners gave a variety of reasons for failing to ensure their animals receive the right injections.
Of those who did not vaccinate, 17% deemed the item “too expensive,” while the same proportion argued that will their pet did not come into contact with various other animals. A slightly lower proportion (16%) said they felt the item was “unnecessary,” while 13% said that will their “pet found going to the vet very stressful.”
Alice Jackson’s pet kitten Mr. Meowgi recently died by Feline Leukemia virus (FeLV), a loss she described as “incredibly distressing,” for both herself in addition to her son.
“He was an indoor cat in addition to never usually went outside, although one day he escaped in addition to went missing, even though we’re always careful not to let him get out,” she said.
“If I’d have known a vaccination course might have saved his life I might have had This specific sorted immediately. Seeing him deteriorate so quickly was so traumatic. My son is actually autistic in addition to had developed a close bond with him, in addition to having to say goodbye to him has broken all of our hearts.”
Among the various other issues of concern raised by the report that will almost one in all 5 (19%) of dogs are left home alone for too long, while almost half (49%) of rabbits live in “solitary confinement.”