World Zoonoses Day 2021: Zoonoses or Zoonosis is an infectious disease caused by a pathogen (it can be an infectious agent such as bacteria, viruses, parasites, etc.) that has jumped from vertebrate animals to humans or vice versa. Ebola and Salmonellosis are Zoonoses that spread in the early stages of the 20th century. Zoonoses are infectious diseases that can spread from animals to humans or vice versa. It can spread through direct contact, vector-borne or foodborne. When Louis Pasture succeeded in finding a vaccine against Rabies Virus (A zoonotic disease), World Zoonoses Day was recognized to commemorate the success.
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World Zoonoses Day – 6th July 2021
The word Zoonoses derived from Greek, where Zoon means animal and noses means Sickness. World Zoonoses Day is celebrated on 6th July annually all over the world since the year 1885. The purpose of this day is to raise awareness of the risk of Zoonotic diseases.
Significance of World Zoonoses Day 2021
The significance of this day is to spread awareness about zoonotic diseases. These are some of the infections caused by the animals that we encounter in our routine life. Rats, rodents, cattle, sheep, pigs, many such animals, reared to produce products that are used by humanity in their everyday activities. Most of the time, neither the people who rear these animals nor the veterinary professionals who treat these animals realize these infections’ seriousness until it takes a severe form.
The spread of these infections is rapid; hence it becomes very critical for people to be aware. People who rear cattle, cow and such animals should know about zoonotic diseases. They can ask for help from veterinary professionals to identify these infections. Understand the preventive measures and vaccinations that can be taken to stay protected from such contamination.
Zoonoses or Zoonotic diseases spread from vertebrate animals (like Virus, Bacteria and parasites) to humans and vice versa. Animals are the significant carriers of these infections. About 75 percent of the new or existing infections originate in the animals, and most of such diseases that humanity has seen, like Rabies Virus, Ebola, ringworm, are all transmitted by animals.
When humans infect other animals, it is called reverse Zoonoses or anthroponosis. Veterinary professionals can be the most significant source of spreading awareness of these infections. Veterinarians should be involved in addressing zoonotic diseases. Veterinarians collaborate with people at local, national and international level as a part of the one health initiative to curb such zoonotic infections from spreading.
Most Common Zoonotic Diseases
- African sleeping sickness – found in a range of wild animals and domestic livestock – transmitted by the bite of a tsetse fly
- Anthrax – found in cattle, sheep, goats, camels, horses and pigs or commonly gazing herbivores – transmitted by inhalation or skin contact of spores.
- Bird Flue – found in wild birds, domesticated birds such as chicken – transmitted by close contact.
- Ebola Virus – found in chimpanzees, gorillas, orangutans, monkeys – transmitted through body fluids and organs.
- Foodborne illness / Diarrhoea – found in animals that are domesticated or for food production – spread through raw or under-cooked food made from animals.
- Influenza – found in horses, pigs, Birds and wild aquatic mammals – droplets transmitted through the air.
- Leprosy – found in monkeys, rabbits and mice – transmitted through direct contact, including meat consumption.
- Nipah Virus infection – found in rodents and primates – transmitted through contact with infected rodents or contaminated materials.
- Rabies – found in rats and mice – transmitted through the bite of rats and urine and mucus secretions.
- Swine influenza or Swine Flu – found in pigs – transmitted through close contact.
It is now critical for us to be aware of zoonotic infections, take precautions and preventive measures before it leads us to severe new illness. Let us take baby steps towards having a hygienic routine every day. Let’s make efforts to keep our surroundings clean, which will help keep the parasites and rodents away.
Our TINY efforts can make a HUGE difference!