AbstractThis study was conducted to profile the antibody levels to rabies in dogs presented at veterinary clinics and determine rabies awareness among dog owners in Abeokuta, Nigeria. Records of dogs’ rabies vaccination were obtained to determine their vaccination status and number of times they had been vaccinated. Sera from 138 dogs of consenting owners were analysed using indirect ELISA technique to detect rabies antibodies. Structured questionnaire was administered to 138 dog owners to determine their awareness on rabies. Data were analysed using descriptive statistics, Chi‑square, ANOVA and t‑test at p ≤ 0.05. Of 138 dogs screened, 114 (82.6%) had history of vaccination against rabies. Of these 114, 87 (76.3%) were seronegative; however, 5 (3.6%) of the 24 unvaccinated dogs were seropositive. Overall, 32 (23.2%) comprising 15 (10.8%) males and 17 (12.3%) females had positive rabies antibodies level. Five (3.6%), 3 (12.1%) and 24 (17.4%) were seropositive among dogs of < 6 months, 6‑12 months and > 1 year of age, respectively. Dogs > 1 year had significantly higher antibodies than < 6 months (p < 0.05). Most (86.9%) of the dog owners were aware of rabies. The low seroconversion in vaccinated dogs and prevalence of rabies antibodies in unvaccinated dogs are of public health concern. There is need for regular sero‑profiling of vaccinated and unvaccinated dogs.
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