Four people, including three women, were attacked and bitten by a stray dog near the Rawalpindi Railway Station in Feb 2021.

As the victims came under attack, people present on the spot rushed to rescue them. Eyewitnesses said the dog was killed by the crowd.

Immediately, the Rescue-1122 was called in and the injured were transported to the District Headquarters Hospital for medical assistance.

Among the victims is an elderly woman who is said to be in a critical condition. The Rescue-1122 spokesperson said 70-year-old was brought to the hospital with critical wounds and that doctors were doing their best to save her life. The spokesperson identified two other injured as 18-year-old Muqaddas Bibi and 62-year-old Sahib Jan, while the identity of the fourth victim could be ascertained immediately.

Muqadis Bibi came under attack in front of the PTCL office near the army building in the Saddar area, while Sahib Jan was bitten by the dog in front of the Cantt Public School.

The Rescue-1122 said the elderly Muqaddas Yar was attacked by the dog near Pohri Pull, Muhammadi Masjid.

No vaccine

Ironically, the hospital treating the dog-bite victims did not have the anti-rabies vaccine at its disposal.

Providing the injured with basic medical treatment, the hospital administration asked their relatives to buy the vaccine from the market.

The hospital said the injured had sustained deep wounds due to the dog bite. They said tests were being run on the victims to identify the nature of the poison.

Call for action

Following the incident, citizens expressed dismay over the increasing incidents of dog-bites in the country. People demanded of the authorities to take concrete measures to control the population of stray dogs in a humane way and also ensure the safety for citizens.

In Jan 2021, the district authorities in Islamabad had announced a ban on the culling of dogs. It had also decided to begin spay, neuter and vaccination programmes.

“There will be no more dog shootings in the capital,” DC Islamabad Hamza Shafqaat had told media. The officials had decided that municipal by-laws would be amended to remove the clause mentioning elimination of dogs and that the Capital Development Authority and the Islamabad city administration in collaboration with animal welfare groups would work to spay, neuter and vaccinate stray dogs.