HELPING HAND: Jo Mills’ dog Cartman, a German shepherd-cross rescue, is vaccinated by Calvin Samuels, assisted by Tamerin Esterhuyse. Picture: Allan Perrins
Cape Town - More and more pets are dying or left suffering from contagious diseases as a result of a flaw in vaccination legislation.

According to the Animal Welfare Society of SA, based in Philippi, the flaw is in Fertilisers, Farm Feeds, Agricultural Remedies and Stock Remedies Act 36 of 1947, which allowed for the unregulated sale of products registered to be used under veterinary supervision to non-veterinarians, and allowed owners and breeders to vaccinate their own animals at their own risk.

RELATED: Elsies River woman reunited with her therapy dog 'Cashew'

Spokesperson for the organisation Allan Perrins said they had noted an increase in pets being sent to them after being vaccinated by unregistered people.

“We have noticed a worrying increase in the pets being admitted suffering from and succumbing to highly contagious dread diseases like canine parvovirus, despite owners insisting that their pets had been vaccinated in all such cases by a non-veterinary professional.

“In almost all cases, the owner was unable or unwilling to provide us with the details of the person who allegedly vaccinated their animals.”

He added that vaccination certificates given to owners as proof of the animal being vaccinated had been found to be worthless and of no real investigative value.

ALSO READ: 103 dog attacks responded to in 2017

“The vaccination of an animal may appear to be an elementary procedure, but unless one is properly qualified and experienced to determine and diagnose whether or not an animal is healthy or suffering from any underlying disease, a sick animal is very likely to suffer a potentially fatal adverse reaction to being vaccinated.”

Perrins added that only healthy pets should be vaccinated - by vets or suitably qualified and registered para-veterinary professionals.

“Owners may think that they are getting a bargain by enlisting the services of a quack, but the animal pays the price.”

[email protected]

Cape Argus