Feral dogs can harm wildlife directly and indirectly by spreading disease and rabies. This is a serious problem in Madagascar. Vaccine requirements for pets in the U.S. has largely eliminated rabies in populated areas, but without them, rabies would be a problem that affects wildlife in the States, too.
In Madagascar, The Mad Dog Initiative helps prevent the spread of rabies through three initiatives: spay/neuter feral and domestic animals, a vaccination program, and wildlife monitoring. Specifically, The Mad Dog Initiative conducts camera trap and lemur transect surveys in forests surrounding Ranomafana and Andasibe National Parks and nearby villages.
In 2019, their Veterinary Internship program trained Madagascar’s own veterinarian, Dr. Tsiky Rajaonivelo, in state-of-the-art techniques in lemur husbandry and medicine. These efforts were supported by Duke Lemur Center, Travelling Animal Doctors, and LUSH!