Bangladesh plans to vaccinate stray dogs instead of culling them in a bid to prevent rabies that annually kills some 2,000 people in the country.
The government has teamed up with a global group -- World Society for the Protection of Animals, or WSPA -- to begin vaccinating in Cox's Bazar town.
Health Ministry official Be-Nazir Ahmed told The Associated Press Thursday "we want to eliminate rabies but without the need to cull dogs."
In a statement, WSPA said its Cox's Bazar campaign would "save thousands of dogs in its first year alone and pave the way for a nationwide vaccination campaign."
Cox's Bazar, a southern beach resort, was chosen because tourists regularly fall victim to stray dogs. Authorities record up to 300,000 dog bites annually in Bangladesh.