This little girl wouldn't stand much chance if she came face to face with a rabid dog. Her injuries could be horrific. And her family would be faced with the possibility that she could, in turn, develop rabies and die.
Children are most at risk of rabies
Nearly all deaths from rabies are in Africa and Asia, and most of the people who die are children.
Beyond the deaths, rabies also causes intense anxiety and entrenches poverty in the world's poorest communities.
A complete course of post-exposure treatment will save their child. But, in the world's poorest communities, this can cost many times the monthly household income.
To raise the money for treatment families often sell livestock, on which they depend for food. To save their child today, they sacrifice tomorrow's food and income.
It is a particularly vicious circle. Donate. Protect.
Dogs: rabies' forgotten victims
Dogs are often feared and despised because of the threat of the disease and estimates suggest 20,000,000 (20 million) dogs are culled every year in attempts to keep rabies at bay.
Methods used to cull are usually inhumane and include poisoning, electrocution, drowning, clubbing, and starvation: 55,000 dogs every single day.
The saddest thing is, in the long term, this does nothing to protect people from rabies. New dogs quickly move in to claim any empty territories, bringing with them a fresh threat of infection.
Our model for rabies prevention includes vaccinating dogs against rabies to create a barrier of immunity between the disease and people.
Rather than being a threat, vaccinated dogs offer people protection against the disease. This dramatically changes people’s perceptions of the animals around them and improves animal welfare.
With your help we can bring our model for rabies prevention to more communities and improve the prospects for millions of dogs.
The Good News
The good news is rabies is 100% preventable and all the death, worry and financial hardship it causes can be avoided.
Our model of rabies prevention has been proven to work even in resource poor areas.
The little girl in the picture above is holding a notebook. On the front are instructions on what to do if bitten by a suspect rabid animal.
On the back is advice on how to avoid dog bites in the first place. Because knowledge saves lives.
With your help, we can save thousands of lives and free more of the world’s poorest communities from the terrifying threat of rabies.