RABID DOG MEAT: A feast of adobo and kinilaw dog began as a meal and ended up downing 24 people in Passi City, Iloilo.
It was three days after the banquet that 24 people started to complain of fever, headache and nausea.
It is believed the dog may have been rabid. Participants of the feast are being kept under observation.
While no further details are known of this week’s suspected poisoning, in May Rappler reported that 13 people were treated after a similar feast.
The discovery that four adults and nine children had eaten the rabid dog meat came during an investigation into a suspected rabies case in the outskirts of the southern city of Zamboanga, said local government veterinarian Mario Arriola.
The dog had died mysteriously last week, Arriola told AFP.
“We went to the place to investigate if it bit other animals. We had them chop off the head and send it to the laboratory for an examination,” he said.
It was only after the examination confirmed that the dog had rabies that it was learned that the animal’s meat had been served up by local residents.
“We were informed that the adults ate the diseased dog. They did not know it was positive for rabies. Unfortunately, there were some kids who ate it too,” he said.
Zamboanga’s local health department is giving all those who ate the meat the required four anti-rabies injections to ensure they do not develop the fatal disease, he added.
Arriola said they ordered the swift action as part of the government’s effort to eradicate human deaths from rabies. He said that in 2014, for the first time in recorded history, no one died of rabies in the Philippines.
Although butchering dogs for food is illegal in the Philippines, dog meat is still a popular delicacy that is eaten discreetly in certain quarters, particularly in the north of the country.
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