401 people brutally bitten as stray dogs wreak havoc in Zimbabwe

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In a bone-chilling revelation, the Health and Child Care Ministry has disclosed that a staggering 401 dog bite cases have been reported across the country, sparking fear and concern among communities.

Stray dogs, forming menacing packs, have been identified as the primary culprits behind the rising number of attacks. Astonishingly, no deaths have been recorded thus far, according to the ministry’s latest disease surveillance report, covering the week ending July 23, 2023.

The report, obtained exclusively by our tabloid, disclosed that out of the 401 dog bite cases, 71 individuals (17.7%) were bitten by vaccinated dogs, while 65 (16.2%) fell victim to unvaccinated dogs. Shockingly, the status of the remaining 265 cases (66.1%) remains unknown, leaving victims in a state of uncertainty regarding potential rabies exposure.

Geographically, the provinces bearing the brunt of these terrifying canine assaults are Masvingo, with a staggering 76 reported cases, followed closely by Manicaland with 61 cases, and the Midlands with 59 cases. The cumulative figures for dog bites have now reached a startling 2,013 cases, with one reported death.

However, the menace doesn’t end there. The ministry’s report also confirms a distressing outbreak of dysentery, with 197 cases recorded in recent weeks. Thankfully, no deaths have been reported thus far.

Leading the grim tally, Mashonaland West province reported 52 clinical dysentery cases, closely followed by Manicaland with 34 cases. The cumulative figure for dysentery cases has now reached a concerning 7,620, with two unfortunate deaths.

Highlighting another alarming health concern, the report revealed a surge in common diarrhoea cases, with a staggering 7,100 incidents reported. Tragically, four deaths have been attributed to this devastating ailment, with two fatalities occurring at Harare province’s Sally Mugabe Central Hospital and two in Matabeleland North province’s Hwange district. Disturbingly, a significant proportion of cases, 3,818 (53.7%), involve children under the age of five.

Manicaland province continues to bear the brunt of this diarrhoea outbreak, reporting a shocking 1,203 cases, followed closely by Mashonaland West with 1,134 cases. The cumulative figures for common diarrhoea now stand at a staggering 186,358 cases, with a distressing death toll of 107.

As communities grapple with the terror of rampant stray dogs and the concerning rise in diarrhoea outbreaks, residents are left demanding urgent action from local authorities and the Health Ministry to address these pressing public health issues.

Stay tuned for further updates as this developing situation unfolds, and heed caution when venturing into affected areas.

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