|Owners warned against antibiotic resistance
Dog owners are being urged to help Public Health England (PHE), the Veterinary Medicines Directory (VMD) and pet owner awareness charity The Bella Moss Foundation (BMF) to join the fight against antibiotic resistance.
Antibiotic resistance means that an antibiotic has lost its ability to effectively control or kill the bacteria for which it has been given. Whilst resistance is a natural process, the inappropriate and overuse of antibiotics can speed up the development of antibiotic resistance.
In support of 2015 European Antibiotic Awareness Day (EAAD), which runs alongside World Antibiotic Awareness Week, PHE, VMD and BMF are calling on members of the public including dog owners to commit to tackling antibiotic resistance by becoming Antibiotic Guardians. Antibiotic Guardians (https://antibioticguardian.com/
) is a campaign led by PHE where people are asked to make one pledge about a personal action they will take to help combat antibiotic resistance.
Dedicated pledges that pet owners can take in becoming Antibiotic Guardians include:
- To help reduce the risk of my animal getting an infection which requires antibiotic treatment, I will keep them healthy through exercise, good nutrition, relevant vaccination, suitable accommodation and by having regular veterinary health checks
- If my vet gives me antibiotics for my animal, I will follow the instructions provided and I will not change the dosage or stop the therapy early
- If my vet gives me antibiotics for my animal, I will not re-use antibiotics given for an earlier illness or give them to other animals or animal owners and I will dispose of unused or out of date products properly
- I will not request antibiotics if my vet has not recommended or given them to me
- I will support vets' efforts to reduce the risk of antibiotic resistance by better understanding where and when antibiotics are needed.
At the moment there are 18,000 Antibiotic Guardians, PHE want to recruit 100,000 by March 2016.
Jill Moss, founder of The Bella Moss Foundation, said:
"Antibiotic resistance stories have not been far from the headlines in the past couple of years, as the medical profession, researchers and politicians have stepped up work to raise awareness and find new ways of tackling resistance.
"When I lost my dog Bella to an antibiotic resistant infection I lost a member of my family - I want all pet owners to be aware that antibiotic resistance can affect pets and to pledge their support to PHE's Antibiotic Guardian campaign - it's a simple pledge that will help keep our furry family members healthy and make sure we can still use these life-saving drugs for years to come."