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A bioeconomic model for the optimization of local canine rabies control

By Aaron Anderson, Johann Kotzé, Stephanie A. Shwiff, Brody Hatch, Chris Slootmaker, Anne Conan, Darryn Knobel, Louis H. Nel

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We present a new modeling tool that can be used to maximize the impact of canine rabies management resources that are available at the local level. The model is accessible through a web-based interface that allows for flexibility in the management strategies that can be investigated. Rabies vaccination, sterilization, chemo-contraception, and euthanasia can be specified and limited to specific demographic groups. Additionally, we allowed for considerable complexity in the specification of management costs. In many areas, the costs of contacting additional dogs increases as management effort increases, and this can have important strategic implications. We illustrated the application of the model by examining several alternative management strategies in an area of Mpumalanga Province, South Africa. Our results based on this dog population suggested that puppies should be vaccinated and sterilization would not be optimal if the spatial extent of management is not large (and perhaps not even then). Furthermore, given a sufficient budget, it was evident that vaccination campaigns should be repeated annually.


Marcy Wilhelm-South

Purdue University

Date 2019
Publication Title PLOS Neglected Tropical Diseases
Volume 13
Issue 5
Pages 24
DOI 10.1371/journal.pntd.0007377
Language English
Additional Language English
Cite this work

Researchers should cite this work as follows:

  1. Animal roles
  2. Animal welfare
  3. Dogs
  4. Mammals
  5. open access
  6. peer-reviewed
  7. Pets and companion animals
  8. Rabies
  1. open access
  2. peer-reviewed