Kangar: A dogcatcher was bitten by a dog he was trying to snare, but that was not the worst of it.
He managed to impound the dog in Kampung Batu 2, Jalan Kaki Bukit here, but it died in the pen a day later.
A lab test done on a sample of the dead dog’s tissue confirmed the greatest fear – it had rabies and it meant that the dogcatcher was infected with the deadly disease too.
The man, who is with the Malaysian Civil Defence Force, is now being treated in hospital after the attack on June 7.
The Veterinary Services Department is trying to ascertain how wide the disease has spread.
In a statement issued by director-general Datuk Dr Quaza Nizamuddin Hassan Nizam, the rabid dog attack was an isolated incident and he urged the public to remain calm.
He said the disease might have originated from Haadyai, Thailand, which saw cases of rabies early this year.
“The department has actively taken steps to contain the spread of rabies by vaccinating 1,666 dogs, catching and putting down 56 dogs.
“We are also organising public awareness campaigns involving 5,860 individuals, and have surveyed 796 premises since the beginning of the year,” he added.