Awoyomi J Olajoju
Federal University of Agriculture, Nigeria
Awoyomi Olajoju J is a senior Lecturer and a Reseasrcher in the Department of Veterinary Public Health and Reproduction, Federal University of Agriculture Abeokuta, Nigeria. She is interested in veterinary extension services. Her research activities covers various aspects of veterinary epidemiology with focus on zoonotic disease prevention (especially emerging and reemerging zoonosis) and veterinary drug usage.
Statement of the Problem: Rabies is currently without cure, leaving prevention as the only strategy for its elimination from both developed and developing countries. In the provision of effective epidemic prevention policies by the government, certain theoretical frame works are often employed based on their ability to predict behaviour. In this study, the theory of planned behaviour (TPB) was applied in analyzing dog owners’ behaviours.
Methodology & Theoretical Orientation: A cross-sectional survey was conducted in Abeokuta, Nigeria, using a structured questionnaire, based on the model of planned behaviour. The basic demographic data were obtained from respondents. Attitude (ba), perceived behavioural control (pbc), behavioural intention (bi), subjective norm (sn), and knowledge were assessed. The knowledge effect was distinguished as objective knowledge (ok) and subjective knowledge (sk). A total of 225 dog owners (purposively sampled) completed the questionnaire. Pearson coefficient correlation, Chi-square, T-test, and logistic regression analysis were used to review the relationships among these variables and find determinants to explain the dog owners’ intention to vaccinate their dogs and actual vaccination (av).
Findings: Three main results were established; first our model was fit, and each path was significant except pbc ̶ ok path. People with better attitudes, stronger subjective norms, and better perceptive behavioural control had stronger behavioural intention. Secondly, attitude not perceived behavioural control was the best predictive index in this model and perceived behavioural control was more influenced by objective knowledge than subjective knowledge.
Conclusion & Significance: To increase dog vaccination coverage against rabies, the government should not only address dog owners’ attitudes, but also their subjective norms and objective knowledge that in turn affect perceptive behavioural control and intention. This study successfully extended TPB to explain the behavioural intention of dog owners and presented recommendations that are more adapted to the study location.