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Durham University

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Publication details for Dr Jesse Bonwitt

Bonwitt, Jesse, Bonaparte, Sarah, Blanton, Jesse, Gibson, Andrew D., Hoque, Mahbub, Kennedy, Erin, Islam, Kamrul, Siddiqi, Umme Ruman, Wallace, Ryan M. & Azam, Shakif (2020). Oral bait preferences and feasibility of oral rabies vaccination in Bangladeshi dogs. Vaccine 38(32): 5021-5026.

Author(s) from Durham


Oral rabies vaccination (ORV) can increase rabies vaccination coverage among dogs that are inaccessible to parenteral vaccination (i.e., inaccessible dogs). Because bait uptake can differ according to the bait attractant used and dog characteristics, we evaluated proportion of bait uptake and time to bait uptake using three bait formulations. We looked for associations between bait uptake and dog characteristics (temperament, age, and body condition) and assessed the efficiency of using these bait formulations, as measured by number of dogs vaccinated per hour.

A total of 356 baits were offered to free roaming dogs in urban and peri-urban districts of Bangladesh. Fish baits were ignored by 86% (n = 122; 95% CI: 79–91%) of dogs, whereas 60% (n = 45; 95% CI: 49–70%) consumed egg baits and 89% (n = 124; 95% CI: 83–93%) consumed intestine baits. Among the consumed baits, dogs fully consumed 56% (n = 10; 95% CI: 34–75%) of fish baits, 84% (n = 38; 95% CI: 71–92%) of egg baits, and 98% (n = 122; 95% CI: 94–100%) of intestine baits. Among inaccessible dogs, no associations were found between bait uptake and dog characteristics in either bivariate or multivariate analyses. Bait consumption averaged 2 dogs per hour for fish baits, 10 dogs per hour for egg baits, and 18 dogs per hour for intestine baits.

The absence of association between bait type preference and individual dog characteristics simplifies the process of choosing attractants for oral rabies vaccines. While intestine attractants achieved highest uptake, egg baits may prove a suitable compromise when considering biological and operational constraints. The efficiency of ORV was demonstrated when compared to parenteral vaccination of free-roaming dogs previously described.