JAAGRUTI®

Thought for the day

“It doesn’t matter who you are or what you look like, so long as their is somebody to love you”, said Roald Dahl.

Each rescued dog we revisit after rehabilitating them back to their home territories post treatment showers us with bountiful of love, we visited two of them the night before yesterday as we passed by their ‘areas’ (streets where they stay).

For most of us who do anything off the conventional track, like choosing not to burst crackers or spending our Diwali trying to get an injured dog treated, in all likelihood we may be mocked upon and today we just want to tell you, “do not care abut what the world says, its their job to say and we can choose ours, by not listening to their chatter and instead focussing on doing things we love”. For the unconditional love, we get in return from these supposedly ‘speechless beings’ is priceless, that lick on our hands, the tail wagging up and down or sideways, the elated jump…it is all these memorable little moments that make life so worth living.

We believe it when we read that you only get happiness when you give happiness to someone.

We get a lot of calls on the Jaagruti helpline by animal lovers sounding weak, lonely and dis-spirited in their battles fighting their RWAs, neighbours and the world who tries to abuse them, ridicule them, physically assault them, humiliate them, term it whatever..in short anything that breaks their spirits!

We request them all to dig deep through their reserves of courage and hope and amass all strength they can to stand up for, rescue or treat/get treated all those beings whom they love, respect and/or care for.  There is no other way!

Because when that dog or any other animal rescued and treated with your efforts, expresses himself to let you know you are the best, you really don’t need to go around seeking a second opinion. Please remember that this world is a better and compassionate place all because of people like you.

On this day after Diwali, we wish all power to your elbow and all strength to the heart of all such people who carry on doing all that they love.

Can’t remove Pets or harass those who feed street animals, Municipal Corporation of Gurgaon tells RWAs

In the recent past, the Helpline at Jaagruti has received many calls from a lot of street dog lovers/pet owners in Gurgaon on the subject of their respective Resident Welfare Associations (RWAs) barring them from keeping pets or feeding street dogs or fining them etc., and we have directed them to take a stance against their respective RWAs taking inspiration from the content posted on this article of ours.

Taking notice of many such animal lovers rising up in unison, the Municipal Corporation of Gurgaon has taken an informed proactive stance on the matter and dispatched a stern letter to all such RWA office bearers on the adamance, arrogance and above all IGNORANCE being shown by their respective RWA office bearers on this subject, by coming out with warnings and society bye-laws that are in strict contravention to all the national laws.

We appreciate the position taken by Municipal Corporation of Gurgaon on this subject.

To all of these concerned compassionate people worried about the street animals and the pets they love, feed and take care off, the recent news in the Times of India comes as a welcome relief. Please read on.

Can’t remove Pets, Municipal Corporation of Gurgaon to RWAs

By Aditya Dev, TNN, 6th Nov 2012

GURGAON: Even as the management bodies of residential societies are making their own rules for keeping pets, the Municipal Corporation of Gurgaon (MCG) has written to various residents’ welfare associations warning them not to formulate rules and regulations regarding pets and that any such move is in conflict with the law. Such a move may lead to dissolution of the RWA and prosecution of its office bearers, says the letter.

The managing committee Kanchunjunga Cooperative Group Housing Society in Sector 56 had last year imposed a ban on its residents keeping pets. The Close North (Nirvana Country) management also recently banned flat owners from using elevators to take out pets and instructed them to use service elevators instead.

The corporation sent letters to RWAs this February following incidents of cruelty against animals by RWAs, their office bearers and residents were reported. It also came to light that a few RWAs attempted to prevent pet ownership through stipulations in terms of their rental or ownership agreement, threatening pet owners with electricity and water cut offs.

If any rule laid down by anybody is in conflict with the law of the urban local body, state body or central body it is automatically superseded and rendered null and void. The letter says that an RWA threatening discontinuation of basic facilities is illegal.

It is illegal to remove animals from the area through security guards employed by RWAs. Nor can they intimidate residents who may be feeding those animals. Under stray dog management rules 2001, it’s illegal for an individual, RWA or estate management to remove or relocate dogs. The dogs have to be sterilized and vaccinated and returned to the same area. Vaccinated and sterilized dogs cannot be removed by the municipality too.

Under Section 506 of the IPC, it’s a crime to threaten, abuse or harass neighbours who feed animals.

This Diwali..think a little

I am writing this post to share with you a very personal story that always springs back to our (me and my brother Vivek’s, we both co-founded Jaagruti) memories every Diwali or rather in the days nearing it, as we start hearing the noise of bursting firecrackers around us, like in the time that I am penning this down.

The year was 1997, I was in Class 11, studying Sciences at D.A.V Public School, Pushpanjali Enclave, Delhi. I was 15 years old at that time, and every Diwali, my mother would pay an uncle of mine (who had his shop in Sadar Bazaar area of New Delhi) to get a box, or often boxes full of an assortment of firecrackers for us, which we enjoyed ourselves with.

But, that year, there was something unusual and uncharacteristic that our school did pre-Diwali, something I had not seen or learnt about in my 7 years of being in that school.

Our school participated in an ‘Anti-Fire Cracker’ campaign. At first I thought, that this campaign was the school’s way of teaching us not to burn fire crackers as burning them lets to our air being polluted and us contracting a host of respiratory diseases. But I was mistaken.

Under this campaign, we were distributed these little red stickers which had the following text written in Hindi.

“Pataakhe nahi jalaayenge, baal mazdoori hataayenge”

(which in English when translated would mean “We will not burn fire crackers and help get rid of child labour”).

Child Labour and Fire Crackers?? I was confused. What was this being talked about…I listened with intent and that was when I first understood that children as old or many years younger to me are employed by Fire Cracker factories across India to make fire crackers, the fire crackers that I had joyfully burnt in all Diwali festivals prior to that year.

While, we the fortunate ones, used our soft and nimble hands and fingers to write, paint and play, in many a villages in India, children like me were labouring to churn out fireworks working for more than 10-15 hours a day, contracting unknown health ailments in the process of making these tiring efforts to feed themselves and their families.

Kids like her make fire crackers to light up your Diwali. That we burn crackers made by the nimble hands and fingers of young children – is not something that you should feel happy or celebrate about. This is an assorted collection of images taken from various news websites to convey the start and dim reality of firecracker production across to you all (Image Copyright: http://www.ilo.org)

A guilt overtook my conscience that day.

We pledged not to burn fire crackers any more, that Diwali onwards.

The pledge of ours was further strengthened when my fellow classmates enacted a play themed on this subject of ‘Child labour and Fire Crackers’ at the first ever Delhi School Eco-Mela (Eco-fair), held in the lawns of Delhi Public School, Mathura road.

Friends joined in and we convinced our family to not force us to burn fire crackers either.

It has been 18 years since those days and we have been able to stick to the promise we made to ourselves and the pledge we undertook and not burnt a fire cracker ever since.

In 1997, there was no internet we had access to, and neither were there these host of news channels, but today there are many and despite ‘legislations banning the use of children for labour’, many a million kids continue to be exploited and forced to work in and for such fire cracker units even today.

Spare a minute to read one such detailed news article, a 2014 dated news story and watch through the news clips below and think a little before you pick up the next fire cracker to burn this Diwali.

Now choose your next step..

~

Vasudha

(Last revised on 7th November 2015)

Residential Societies can’t ban people from having Pet Animals

Over the past many months, Jaagruti’s helpline has been inundated with calls and queries from people across many major Indian cities, like Gurgaon, Mumbai, Bangalore and other metros where RWAs or Residential Welfare Associations that are formed in various societies have come up with ‘no pet clauses’ and are forcing residents therein to abandon their pets! This post is to apprise you all that ‘RWAs cannot come with such clauses which are both unconstitutional and unlawful.

Please click on the link below to download the notice that was sent to a society in Gurgaon sometime back by a team of well-respected lawyers. If you are facing a similar issue, then take guidance from the text mentioned therein and with the help of a competent advocate/law firm/your very own lawyer friends – get a similar notice drafted and get it sent across to the Office Bearers in your Housing Society. If they don’t get the point on reading your notice, drag them to the Consumer Courts. Remember that all those who have taken this step have won the case and so have their pets and dogs!

Click, Download and Read: Notice issued by respected law firm in Delhi to Kanchanjunga Coop.Group Housing Society in Gurgaon that was asking residents to abandon their pets

Also, read the below pasted Times of India article dated 24th May 2012 and spread it around!

Housing societies can’t prohibit pets, say legal eagles

By Journalist named Swati Deshpande

MUMBAI: Pet owners need not worry. Senior advocates say that housing societies cannot introduce by-laws to prohibit residents from keeping pets in their flats.The Maharashtra Cooperative Housing Societies Act does not prohibit members from keeping pets and no society can pass by-laws to ban pets or families with pets from society premises.

Mulraj Shah, a lawyer, says a cooperative housing society may-by majority vote- make a by-law against pet ownership, but that is only on the valid grounds of continuous nuisance created by such pets. Even such a resolution may not be binding on occupants as it would have to be tested for legality in court, said a constitutional law expert practising at Bombay high court.

In the past, courts have ruled in favour of pet owners. A housing society in Navi Mumbai was fined for having restrained a family pet from using the lift. The Thane consumer court in 2008 imposed a fine of Rs 5,000 and held that the society’s decision to prevent pets from using the lift without any valid reason amounted to “deficiency in service”. A family residing in a housing society is a “consumer” under the law.

In another important ruling in December 2010, a consumer forum in Mumbai Central ordered a housing society in Mahim to stop charging a family an additional Rs 500 for each of its pet dogs, which it said was illegal and directed that the amounts already collected be returned. Societies have a right to make rules for the benefit of its members but the law has to be reasonable and not impinge an individual’s fundamental freedoms and right to life, said lawyers.

“Dogs never bite me. Just humans.”

Beena Mohapatra, a domestic maid from Kolkata  feeds 35 dogs in her locality. We are glad to come across a story with striking similarity. This picture was making rounds across a lot of groups and Facebook’s Animals – Facts and Anecdotes thought of putting up this story, which we are sharing here…

Our planet can still be considered as an average place to live. All credit goes to the Almighty who handpicked a few messengers to service mankind and other neglected species. One such messengers exist in the city of, Calcutta.

No matter how strange it may sound but some of the richest people on earth who are gifted with almost everything do not have the heart to feed a starving animal outside their house. If you think the act of this street urchin is a real act of humanity, share this story with the world.

She is a street urchin, but gifted with a heart of gold. She hasn’t got any clue what tomorrow has in store for her, yet she is brave enough to make the most out of today. She is a happy-go-lucky soul and this little puppy is like a son to her. Both of them are just inseparable and this picture literally translates the very thoughtful quote of the Marilyn Monroe who once said, “Dogs never bite me. Just humans.”

Beena Mohapatra, aged 55 years is a domestic maid by profession. Out of her meagre income she feeds 35 dogs with 2 full meals in a day. Her dedication towards the strays is evident from the fact that she carries 4 buckets of fish, starch & leftovers from nearby market areas and then takes the effort of cooking them for the stray animals. This is not just a display of tremendous hard work, but also a green concept where nothing in the environment is allowed to go waste. A bunch of animal lovers in the area support her cause by occasionally providing her with rice, medicines and other necessities. But her struggle continues every single day with residents who don’t like her feeding the stray dogs and create some problem or the other. It’s the grit and determination of this poor lady which has kept her going all this while. Affectionately called as ‘Beena Mashi’ by her supporters, she holds a fair amount of knowledge about veterinary medicines that she would need to handle a canine emergency. Given the choice of living with any one of her 2 sons – a farmer and driver respectively, Beena Mashi has chosen to live in her ramshackle house just to serve the mute animals of her lane.
What would you call such a person – angel, god sent messenger or an evangelist? Any adjectives used to define her persona will be an understatement. Salutations to this greater being. Long live Beena Mohapatra, may God always be there by your side. Share this story to tell the world that our planet is still a better place

Indian Government bans use of live animals for education, research

As reported by Times of India’s Linah Baliga in a news report dated 17th April, 2012

MUMBAI: The Union ministry of environment and forests (MoEF) has banned the use of live animals in dissection and other experiments in educational and research institutions. But scientists conducting new molecular research will be exempted from the ban.

Based on the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act (1960), the MoEF has issued guidelines to the University Grants Commission, ministry of health and family welfare, Pharmacy Council of India and the Medical Council of India to discontinue dissection and experiments with live animals in universities, colleges, research institutes, hospitals, laboratories and instead use alternatives like computer simulation.

The MoEF says that the central government is duty-bound to use alternatives to avoid unnecessary suffering or pain to animals.

It states that effective alternatives in the form of CDs, computer simulations and mannequin models are available; they are not only effective as absolute replacements for animals in teaching anatomy or physiology but are also superior learning tools in teaching of pharmacy or life sciences.

The guidelines were framed based on the duties of the Committee for the Purpose of Control and Supervision of Experiments and Animals (CPCSEA), which has been constituted under the provisions of Section 15 of the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act (1960).

The committee comprises seven nominees – three nominees appointed by CPCSEA and the rem-aining four from educa-tional institutes.

“The animal experiments should be stopped in all institutes except for the purpose of new molecular research. Sometimes, in laboratories, a lot of work is repeated and animals become unnecessary victims. Only scientists researching on a new molecular theory can experiment on animals. In medical and pharmacy colleges, there is unwanted cruelty towards animals which can be avoided. These guidelines mention imprisonment for five years and monetary penalty,” said Mangal Jain, a nominee of the Institutional Animal Ethics Committee (IAEC), which is appointed by CPCSEA.

Hoshang Bilimoria, also a nominee appointed by the CPCSEA, said the guidelines were a welcome change.

“CPCSEA should give the nominees the power to inspect animals housed in educational institutes, experimentation centres or technical laboratories without prior intimation to the institutes. Cross-checks should also be maintained through other members,” said Bilimoria.

Additional Links for Reference:

1.  UGC Guidelines for discontinuation of dissection and animal experimentation in Zoology/ Life Sciences in a phased manner

2. Circular issued by Pharmacy Council of India to its Member Institutions_19 January 2012

Educating emotions

The below article written  by Eunice deSouza in Pune Mirror is worth reading and sharing with as many ‘humans’ as you know.

For this post says so much of what we at ‘Jaagruti’ always wanted to put in words. As she rightly pens, ‘People need lessons in empathy, the imagination to put themselves in place of others or animals’…to spare a moment and feel the way the animals would with all that we humans mete out to them.

People need to realise the
benefit from contact with animals
and the natural world

I happened to be standing at a local bus stop one day when children were returning from school. I suddenly noticed a small group of young boys had collected and were staring at something on the wall behind me.

They were picking up stones. I look around, and there was a chameleon on the wall which the children were determined to kill. I shooed them away, but they kept coming back. Would “blood-lust” be too strong a term to describe the way they behaved?

Children as young as two pick up stones to throw at inoffensive dogs having a nap, while their bovine mothers stand there saying nothing. Of course, if the dog were to give the child a nip in return, all hell would be let loose.

Then there was the dog whose eyes were bleeding. We were to take him to hospital, but he was in a panic and rushed here and there. The young men who were trying to catch him finally succeeded. But in the meantime, a crowd had gathered, laughing and cheering.

You wouldn’t think all this could happen in a country where we are so ready to say our feelings have been hurt! Is this because, in our educational system and elsewhere, we don’t think seriously in terms of educating emotions?

In his autobiography, John Stuart Mill talks about the rigorous system his father put him through. If I’m not mistaken, he says that from the age of three or so, he was made to study Greek, Latin, History, and a great deal more.

At some point in his life, he felt so dead that he was near a nervous breakdown. It was then that he found relief and salvation in reading Wordsworth, whose work put him in touch with feelings that were both experienced and explored.

He is a poet who was as relevant then as he is now: “The world is too much with us; late and soon,/Getting and spending, we lay waste our powers: Little we see in Nature that is ours;/We have given our hearts away, a sordid boon!”

Valuing Science, Engineering, Medicine, Technology is fine. But we are more than scientists, engineers, doctors or computer specialists. Empathy, the imagination to put ourselves in the place of others, doesn’t always come naturally. (It does to my dog.

When I came home with a bandaged eye, he looked at it for a while and then licked my hand.) Nor can we expect to feel empathy all the time for everyone and everything. I, for one, would have happily machine-gunned that lot laughing and cheering while looking at the blind dog.

Sometimes, when I reach a point when I feel I can’t stand any more of this, something reassuring happens. One of half-a-dozen or so of small businessmen who look after animals, and are around the corner from me, asked me to look at a dog the other day.

The dog had a head wound infested with maggots. He was not a local dog. Wounded dogs often run from place to place because they are so distressed. Often people shoo them away. I knew there was really no hope for the dog. When I said this, the shop owner said, “Let’s give him a chance.” So we called the ambulance.

Obviously, people like him don’t need lessons in empathy. They know that we benefit from contact with animals and the natural world as much as animals/ birds benefit from our caring. But perhaps, till the great revolution in empathy arrives, we can make a small start: persuade ourselves to put out a bowl of water for thirsty animals and birds in this awful weather.

Delhi International Airport Limited’s (DIAL’s) Paper Recycling Initiative with ‘Jaagruti’ gets featured in the National Press

Delhi International Airport Limited’s Paper Recycling Initiative with ‘Jaagruti’ gets featured in the National Press on 2nd April, 2012

To read the Online version of this news story, please click here

Excerpt from this story is quoted below:

The Indira Gandhi International Airport here has initiated measures like using recycled papers at its premises in a bid to become a ‘green airport’. After putting in place some of the green initiatives like rainwater, use of natural lights and efforts to reduce emissions, the airport operator, Delhi International Airport Limited (DIAL), has now decided to use recycled papers in its offices. For this, DIAL has entered into an agreement with an NGO ‘Jaagruti’, which will recycle the waste paper generated in its offices and get the notepads or A4 sheet made from the recycled paper.

 “The collected waste paper would be systematically graded and transported to the recycling mill. There it would be processed to make different quality of recycled paper by using Elemental Chlorine Free (ECF) bleaching technology,” a DIAL spokesperson said.

 This would save 17 trees, 26,281 litres of water, 264 kg of air pollution, 1,752 litres of oil, 4077 KW hours of energy, 82.62 cubic feet of landfill space, he claimed. As a part of the initiative, DIAL shared one tonne of paper waste for recycling to Jaagruti. “DIAL is committed to conducting its business in an environment-friendly and sustainable manner at IGI airport by minimising the impact of our activities on the environment and community. Environment Management is an integral part of our business strategy towards achieving credibility and business sustainability,” DIAL CEO I Prabhakar Rao said.

If you or the organisation you work with want to associate with ‘Jaagruti’ under our Paper Recycling Initiative to recycle your waste paper, please contact us by filling the form below or calling us on +91-9818 144 244 or writing to us on contact@jaagruti.org

“Feeding stray dogs is not a crime”: Mumbai Court clears duo arrested, humiliated for feeding dogs

Today’s Mumbai  Mirror reports this heartening news, as reported by their correspondent Yogesh Sadhwani:

Court clears duo arrested, humiliated for feeding dogs

Sanjeev Dighe (pictured) and Yatin Mhatre were paraded around, ostensibly to show other residents what happened to people who fed strays (Courtesy Mumbai Mirror_2nd April 2012)

Two animal lovers from Thane, who were arrested and humiliated two years ago after a stray dog they used to feed allegedly bit a resident, have finally been acquitted, with a magistrate court ruling that feeding strays was not a crime.

The order provides welcome relief for animal lovers in the city, many of whom are pulled up by their housing societies for taking care of strays. Only recently, well-known director Partho Ghosh had a quarrel with his society management when he was fined Rs 1000 in his maintenance bill for feeding two stray dogs. His family, incidentally, had been taking care of them since they were pups.

This order is only the first victory for Sanjeev Dighe and Yatin Mhatre, who are fighting a separate case in High Court against the State and the police for handcuffing them and parading them around their society. In this, they are being represented by Mahesh Jethmalani and have the backing of, among others, Maneka Gandhi.

For Dighe, a commercial artist, and Mhatre – both residents of Lok Puram complex in Thane – the nightmare started on September 20, 2009. The duo had been feeding strays in their locality for several years, something that had led to many altercations with society members. Dighe says the residents believed this would lead to an increase in the stray dog population in the area.

That night, Dighe was getting ready to go out and feed the strays around 10.45 pm when a posse of cops arrived in a private vehicle and asked him to accompany them to Vartak Nagar Police Station. Mhatre accompanied him there, and a few hours later, the duo were booked under Section 289 of the Indian Penal Code, which deals with animals in a particular person’s care attacking someone.

The next morning, both were handcuffed and taken to their society, where they were paraded around, ostensibly to show other residents what happened to people who fed strays. They were then taken to a holiday court, which released them on bail.

In a recent order, Jaishree Poonawala, judicial magistrate first class, remarked that “feeding stray dogs is not a crime”, adding that strays were not the same as pets and certainly not the sole responsibility of those who feed them.

“After our arrest, Maneka Gandhi personally got involved and helped us file the petition in HC through Mahesh Jethmalani,” said Dighe.

This order itself has come as a huge relief to Mhatre and Dighe. “Finally justice has prevailed. Several people like me are often victimised by residents who do not like others feeding strays. We hope this order will help others like us,” said Dighe.

Ajay Marathe, a noted animal rights activist, pointed out that incidents of animal lovers being victimised were common in Mumbai. “Those who feed dogs in their area are treated badly. Most residents are against such feeding and come up with random rules to stop them,” said Marathe.

RK Joshi, convener of Committee to Monitor Animal Welfare Laws in Maharashtra, has recently written to the BMC commissioner highlighting the issue of societies trying to get rid of stray dogs.

He has pointed out that years after Bombay High Court laid down the guidelines for dealing with stray dogs – the HC has put an emphasis on animal birth control and sterilisation – people continued to harass dogs and animal lovers.

“There is growing tendency in housing societies not to permit stray dogs on the society premises or even in the vicinity. There have been instances when dogs are brutally assaulted by the society members or the watchmen,” the letter states, adding that instances of animal lovers being assaulted were common.

The letter urges the commissioner, who is also the chairman of the Monitoring Committee, to urgently look at these issues and ensure that animal lovers and dogs were not harassed.

~~

Ms. Anjali Sharma, Advocate and Legal Advisor to the Animal Welfare Board of India, says that what is extremely significant is this part: “In a recent order, Jaishree Poonawala, judicial magistrate first class, remarked that “feeding stray dogs is not a crime”, adding that strays were not the same as pets and certainly not the sole responsibility of those who feed them.”

This is, as Ms. Sharma explains, because these men had been arrested under Section 289 of the Indian Penal Code – ‘negligent conduct with respect to an animal’, after a stray they were feeding bit a resident of the locality. Section 289 applies to pet dogs, but there has been an increasing attempt on the part of many, including police, R.W.A.s, etc. to bring feeding of strays, and any aggression the strays may show if provoked, within the ambit of this Section.

The Rain Catchers – A Practical Guide to Solve Your Water Problems :

Director: Pradip Saha | Producer: Centre for Science and Environment
Genre: Documentary | Produced In: 2005

Synopsis: Catch rain where it falls. This is the unambiguous message carried by “The Rain Catchers”, a training and information video on urban rainwater harvesting. And for a world in which access to water – or rather, the lack of it – might drive the next major conflict, this message holds immense significance. The film is an easy-to-use resource guide. It answers all the key questions (including what is urban rainwater harvesting and how is it done), and goes further to look at policy dimensions, products and technologies and maintenance issues across a range of geoclimatic zones in India.

The film takes the viewer to different cities documenting a wide range of very interesting and successful urban water harvesting case studies from industry, academic institutions (university campuses and schools), residential buildings, clubs, colonies, slum dwellings, urban water bodies and sports facilities (stadiums).

 

Medicine list to cure a dog who has had a paralytic attack*

Before this information gets erased of our memories, we also wanted to share the list and dosage of medicines that our doctor advised us to give to Hasmukh, when we were hoping against hope that he is unable to walk because he has had a paralytic attack, and not because he had the fatal spinal cord fracture as we came to know much later when we took him to the doc.

Maybe the information shared below, on the medicines that have the potential to cure dogs who have suffered from  a paralytic, will help some of you somewhere in curing a dog in need:

Homeopathic Medicines:

1. Arnica 1M-Morning-10 to 15 small ball tablets

2. Ruta 1M-Afternoon-10 to 15 small ball tablets

3. Rustox 1M-Evening-10-15 small ball tablets

Ayurvedic Medicines

Shilajeet Gel: 1 drop daily to be put on the tongue of the dog

Allopathic Medicine

Methycobal 500 mg- 1 Capsule in the morning and 1 Capsule in the evening

*Disclaimer: Our doc did tell us that all three medicines above could be given as a combination. However, if you were to ever use this info, please do consult your vet beforehand and show the dog to a veterinary medicine expert and take his opinion. Kindly note that he information above is solely being shared for informational purposes.

If dogs could write their last will & testament…

A dying boy’s special bond with a rescue dog

The most important thing in this world is to learn to give out love, and let it come in.

– Morrie Schwartz –

 

Every moment is extra precious for 4-yr-old Lucas Hembree. Suffering from Sanfilippo syndrome, he isn’t expected to live past 15. As the disease started to take a toll on Lucas’ joints, his father Chester looked into getting a service dog to keep Lucas steady when he walked. A combination of prayer and persistence led Chester to Juno. “I had the feeling in my gut that I had to go see this dog,” said Chester. But Juno herself was in bad shape: “She was emaciated, and was days away from being euthanized,” said Chester. Right away, there was something instinctive about the relationship between Lucas and Juno. One day, Chester noticed Juno circling Lucas while he was in his wheelchair. “She was whining and nudging him with her nose,” Chester says. “I checked his oxygen levels and they were very low.” After giving him oxygen, Lucas returned to normal and Juno greeted him with licks and affection. The full, heart-melting story: { read more }

**Please note that this post is kind courtesy of the Daily Good Newsletter dated 8 February 2012

~Dog’s best friend!~

*This story is authored by Ramendra Singh and is kind courtesy of The Times of India

Kind courtesy and Copyright held by http://www.hollymonroe.com

BHOPAL: He does not mind skipping his lunch In fact, he did so on many times in the past. But there is one practice he has followed doggedly –feeding stray dogs-for the past 20 years.

The man, Laxmi Narayan Sharma, a clerk with ‘Barkatullah University’ (located in city of Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh, India) been feeding rotis to street dogs on the varsity campus from the day he joined the service, without fail. To some it may appear as fixation but the man, now popularly known as ‘Kutte Waale Baba‘ (which would lovingly mean something like ‘Uncle with dogs’), is beyond all such worldly cares. He carries a bagful of rotis for dogs everyday.

Sharma, a resident of Vidisha, a town 70 km away from Bhopal, comes to his work place with a bag full of rotis. And wait a minute, before setting out on his journey, he starts his day by collecting rotis from hotels and dhabas in Vidisha. “I provide flour to hotels and dhabas in the night and they hand over tandoori rotis in the morning,” Sharma said, adding this gives me immense satisfaction. He said, “I had to once borrow money from my friends to buy food for dogs. I can skip my meal, but cannot leave my friends hungry.” “When he reaches university in the morning, one can see him surrounded by dogs,” Anil Tanwar, an employee of Barkatullah University, said, adding “his devotion for canines must be appreciated.” Sharma spends around Rs 10,000 every month on feeding dogs. “They are my friends and I don’t think it’s a big amount”, he said.

On his off-days, he ensures that ‘his friends’ get proper food in his absence. For this he seeks services of his university colleagues living in nearby colonies.

A 15-yr-old Dog’s Gift

‘The next time you are a little down, do an act of service — it might just be the gift you need.’

This was the message that came to us through a mail that shared the story of Roadie, a 15 year old dog and his gift to a grieving man. This story was penned by Laura Simpson, a tireless advocate for animals.

Courtesy: The Daily Good Newsletter dated 19 November 2011

Laura writes….”I have the pleasure of meeting hundreds of incredible heroes, but this one caught me off guard. Your hair will stand on end as you read the story of this man and this dog who picked one another up time and time again: ‘I saw in the front yard what appeared to be a very old dog that was in obvious distress. He would walk in a semi-circle, then fall to the ground, then struggle back to his feet and do it again. I saw him do this same thing at least three times as I walked over to him. This was to be by far my easiest rescue because this poor old boy was in no shape to run from me, but also the most heartbreaking”.

To read the complete story, please click here

Tail docking banned in India by Veterinary Council

Earlier this year, the Animal Welfare Board of India (AWBI) had issued a circular asking different bodies, individuals to ban tail docking and ear clipping by vets for cosmetic purposes.
The Veterinary Council of India (VCI)  has now officially notified the same in their bye laws.

Letter issued by Veterinary Council of India banning tail docking throughout India

So in case you find any Veterinary Doctor/Vet, anywhere in India practicing this cruel method, kind inform the Veterinary Council of India and AWBI so that the same may be stopped.
This is applicable all over India and it is upto the pet owners and animal lovers to make sure that vets don’t do this any further.

Peep underneath your car…there could be a life sleeping underneath

23 September 2011: We found Hasmukh sitting next to an electricity metre box in the service lane on the road a kilometre off our place. On our next round that evening, he was still sitting at that spot, panting. On checking with the chowkidaar (security guard) there, our worst fears came true. Hasmukh couldn’t stand up on his hind legs and thus couldn’t walk. Hasmukh was not a street dog of this area, and as we learnt he used to stay across the road and since the chowkidaar and ragpickers found him dragging himself on the middle of the main road, they kept him this side.

If you are wondering why we named him Hasmukh (which means ‘Smiling face’ in English), thats because that was the first name that popped up in our head as we saw him with his lower canine sticking out from one end of his lower jaw :)

We were not interested in packing Hasmukh off to an animal shelter, which is for us always the last preferred option. We lifted him in and brought him to a safe and secluded neighbourhood park, which was clean and not being used by either humans or other street dogs. We made him a nice cosy bed of grass there and fed him that night and decided that we will do our best to get him standing on his feet using the best possible medication underneath open the open sky than make Hasmukh feel depressed amidst hundreds of other sick animals lodged at a shelter.

Hasmukh: Day 1 in the park we kept him in

24 September 2011: Morning time, we went to feed Hasmukh and found big ants stuck around his genitals, a fearful sight and painful because Hasmukh had no sensation of all of them sticking around there, we removed the insects and applied medicines over him to keep the insects away. Amidst all of this, the positive aspect was that Hasmukh was eating well and by the afternoon meal, we knew he loved milk, cheese and pedigree while he had trouble digesting rotis because of his deformed jawline.

We requested the vet to come over that evening and check on him as we didn’t want to put Hasmukh through the trouble of being driven in that condition…it was pitch dark when the vet came and when he did the pin prick test on his hind legs, Hasmukh could not feel any sensation at all!

A couple of painkillers and a multivitamin injection were administered to Hasmukh and we decided to get the course repeated every two days and observe and feed him in the meantime.

27 September 2011: After the previous injections, Hasmukh had become more active, he was sitting in attentive doggy poses the whole day and even growled a female dog that came too close to him away…we were happy by the progress he was making. On 27th night, we repeated the dose of injections.

Hasmukh began sitting attentively whole day long

28 September 2011: At a Street Dog Anti-Rabies camp, we discussed Hasmukh case with another trusted vet of ours and gained in optimism when we learnt that a paralysed dog can be brought to feet by giving him a course of homeopathic medicines for a month, which can also be aided by an allopathic medicine named Methycobal (to be given morning and evening). Excited and optimistic, we got the medicines that very night.

29 September 2011: The fickleness of life came to the fore. We went to feed Hasmukh that noon and saw a sight that scared the wits out of us.  He had a big gaping wound with pus…on the pelvic region of the right hind leg just next to the tail and there were flies hovering around that portion, fearful that maggots would infest him, we got him to our home and took him to our trusted vet (Who had prescribed the homeopathic dose the previous day). It was in that visit to the vet, that all our optimism gathered through the previous day came to nought, the vet examined his back portion and told us that as per his analysis, he had a spine fracture and it was due to that spinal fracture, that Hasmukh’s hind legs had been rendered immobile, though we did believe that from day 1 till now, he had started feeling few sensations back…The vet gave his verdict, Hasmukh should be put to sleep if the spine fracture gets confirmed, his life would be full of misery otherwise.

Shocked! We asked our vet two questions…what was that big gaping wound that had come up on his hind leg? “Its a bedsole”, the vet answered…”it will not get healed”, he said and rather such bedsoles will gradually form on different portions of the legs in times to come as bedsoles happen when the body is immobile”.

Hasmukh's bedsole

Our next question, can a spinal fracture be healed? And our vet answered, “No, not even in humans…though there are surgeries these days for humans, but the chances of surviving the surgeries are remote and the risks too many as even one nerve getting hurt during the operation, can paralyse the whole body”.

Our hopes crashed that night and we got Hasmukh home back with us, and gave us a cushiony mattress, food and lots of love over the next two days. We wanted him to live the best days of his life.

Hasmukh comes home

…on 1 October 2011, the whole evening, Hasmukh for the first time, made us hear his voice, he was talking or crying in pain, we would never know…but he wanted us to sit next to him and only then would he be quiet else he would start those voices again.

2 October 2011: We had planned to get Hasmukh’s Spinal Cord X rays done and we did. Only to see the terrible condition in which his spine had been fractured. See below, the overlapping fractured bones and the 1 inch gap between the fractured overlapping portions.

Hasmukh's Spinal Cord X-ray: The Final Verdict!

Hasmukh stood no chance of recovery and his bedsole was only increasing in girth. To relieve him off his pain and suffering, with a stone on our hearts, we decided to let him go. All animals go to heaven is what we believe and so would Hasmukh, we knew.

A lingering question pained us no end…How did Hasmukh fracture his spine so badly? Clearly because a senseless driver in hurry had not bothered to look underneath his car where Hasmukh might have been resting on that fateful day, the car romped over him.

Rest in peace dear Hasmukh.

Rest in Peace dear Hasmukh

The ten days that you spent with us gave us a lesson for life. Your patience was admirable, your spirit indomitable and needless to say, your smile was lovely and thats why we named you ‘Hasmukh’.

And to all of you reading this, just remember to pass this word on, that the next time you turn your car’s ignition on to embark on a road journey, please spare a moment to peep underneath your car to check if an animal like Hasmukh is resting underneath your car, next to the tyre or flat on the ground under the shade of the car.

Try to shoo that resting animal away by blowing a horn or making some other strange noise to scare him away, atleast that will ensure that the beginning of your road journey is not the end of someone’s journey of life.

Shoo the dog away if he is sleeping underneath your car, lest you drive over him and crush its bones (Courtesy: http://www.bkkpetfoto.com)

Please drive safely.

Adopting a Pet is therapeutic

Courtesy: The Times of India (dated 2 October 2011)

Credit and Author: Gajanan Khergamker (The Times of  India, dated Oct 2, 2011)

Forty eight-year-old Smriti Parmar had been suffering from chronic depression and her blood pressure had shot up alarmingly since her husband’s death last June. Medication didn’t seem to be helping and her family was at its wits end trying to figure a way out of this problem. That’s when somebody suggested pet therapy. And, it worked! “Since we got Pia, our one-and-half-year-old Alsatian home last month, my mother’s health has improved considerably.

Her blood pressure is under control and she seems a lot happier too,” says Ms Parmar’s son Chirag, an SYBA student. In fact, Ms Parmar spends most of her time with Pia, talking to her, disciplining her, singing to her or doing just about anything . And, now she also wants to get another pet Alsatian to “give Pia company’ ,” says Chirag. Research has proved time and again that petowners tend to be healthier and happier than those who do not have pets at home. They not just have higher survival rates following coronary heart disease ; they are also believed to be less prone to death due to heart attack. “Pets are great stressbusters , they’re good companions , who listen to all your woes without any complaints!” offers senior veterinarian Dr Siloo Bhagwager .

// // Besides the therapeutic value of keeping a pet, they are known to do wonders to a child’s development. “Children who own pets develop a nurturing behaviour, positive self-esteem and an enhanced all-round development,” says Dr Bhagwager. And then, pets are known to be much more perceptive than human beings. Your spouse may not notice that you are in a foul mood, but your pet definitely will! “Just as I enter my home, I know Tarzan – my two-year-old Doberman – knows how my day has been!” says realty consultant Tarun Mehra. “And, he’ll do all that he can, roll on the floor; dance even play dead to fetch a smile on my face, if
I’ve had a crappy day at work,” adds Mr Mehra, who “can’t really say the same” about his wife Nandini though.

“Interestingly, dogs pick up even on the subtlest of body signals, especially of their owners. They can easily gauge your disposition from the smell of your body,” explains Canine Behaviour Counsellor Shireen Merchant. “Besides, they understand your non-verbal signals – facial expressions, body language, et al – too well so you don’t need to tell them everything,” adds the counsellor. Unlike
children, pets are not wilful; they don’t have mood swings and never talk back. “Whether I’m irritable or not, I know Canny, my two-and-halfyear-old cat, adores me unconditionally. She makes me feel that I’m great just the way I am!” says marketing executive Deepika Pradhan. Now, that’s something most human beings just can’t do, can they?

PET FACTS

Pet-owners visit the doctor less often than those who do not own pets. Pet-owners are said to have lower blood pressure and cholesterol levels than non-pet-owners .

Pets reduce stress, anxiety and loneliness especially among single owners . Walking with a dog or sharing space with a dog, fills the pet-owner with a sense of security. Children who own pets are known to have positive self-esteem and better cognitive development. They tend to have an enhanced all-round development . Companionship of pets helps one deal better with some serious illness or death in the family.

You didn’t even say goodbye :'(

Courtesy: This poem made its way into our inbox someway through this link of Meigs Co Dog Shelter, whom we hereby credit for penning this down.

Please share this poem with anyone who has abandoned or is thinking of abandoning their pet. It may make them think atleast once over the most painful act they will ever commit in their life…

 “Woof”!

 I said as you started the car,
“Hooray!” I said, it’s my first time afar.
The scents we were passing were all new to me,
For it was my first introduction to this mystery.
As we got out of the car I embraced you with joy,
After all you remembered to bring my favourite toy!
You threw it once or twice, of which I retrieved,
But on the third it seemed you were ready to leave.
You threw it long and hard and I chased it like lightning,
But when I turned to bring it back I saw a sight quite frightening.
I gripped my toy hard as I tried to comprehend
What it was I did wrong to make our relationship end.
You walked back to your car as I sat there still loyal.
Why am I subservient and you so royal?
Your engine started, and you peeled out into the night,
You didn’t even care about my overwhelming fright.
As I sat in my pose determined you would come back,
The sun faded behind me while the surroundings turned black.
Day after day I stayed in that park,
Lying… waiting… too feeble to bark.
As I lay there dying thinking of you master,
I asked myself how I got into this horrifying disaster.
With my last breath of life, I whispered your name
Then I collapsed in a heap overrun by pain.
Why didn’t you love me master? Why didn’t you care?
Had I no significance, was I just a clump of hair?
I stayed there master and I waited for you
I guess taking care of me was just too much to do.
I’m gone now master, no more You-and-I
But what I can’t figure out is why you didn’t even say goodbye…

Dolly and Chotu: Neighbour’s envy and owner’s pride!

Author: This story has been contributed by Rishi Dev (Citizens for Animal Rights)

Four cooperative group housing societies in sector 10, Dwarka are facing a new kind of menace from two street dogs, Dolly and Chotu. Both of these dogs have lived outside these four apartments for almost 8 years now, making them the only two dogs in a human population of 2000. Initially there were only a handful of people feeding these dogs and taking regular care of them. But then something happened which changed many a perceptions.

Dwarka still being gripped and plagued with daylight petty crimes like chain snatching, eve teasing, carjacking and so on, is one of the easiest places for any thief to run and hide. Two years back, on one of such evenings when two ladies were taking a walk outside one of these society gates, two thieves on a bike came from nowhere and snatched the chain from one of these ladies and drove away. Within a split second both these dogs, who were sitting outside the gate of the society ran after this bike. Dolly being faster than Chotu approached the bike from the front, almost running in front of the bike slowing and confusing the driver, albeit risking her own life, while Chotu being the tough one ran behind the bike, intimidating the pillion rider, who was transferring the fear on to the rider like a domino effect.

After almost 800 meters of chase, the bikers lost control and fell down. They left the chain, the bike and ran away before people could catch them. Surprisingly both these dogs didn’t bite them or chase them further. They stood there for almost a minute till the residents reached the spot and claimed the bike and the chain. It was later discovered that the bike was also a stolen one.
Since that day onwards everyone in the colony started loving these dogs. They now fight over who feeds, or over feeds these two dogs, because everyone wants to claim their ownership on them. The residents recollect that in the last 8 years there has not been a single case of theft, robbery, crime around these blocks, not excluding zero dog bites. Beyond these four apartments there have been many such cases of crime, but every time there were attempts to infringe into these four apartments in the night, these dogs have barked the hell out of the night guards who are often found sound asleep. The supervisor of the guard agency called “Rakshak”, has instructed all his guards to keep these dogs around while they choose to sleep inevitably. He swears by their dedication all the time. The rickshaw pullers and the other informal shops in and around this area pamper Dolly and Chotu and often treat them equal to their children. They are always ready to face any impending danger which may befall upon these two creatures. For the thieves these two dogs may be proving to be a real menace, but these canines care the least as they are busy playing other roles which are almost invisible to the residents.


Dolly and Chotu are often seen chasing rats, snakes, monitor lizards and so on. Dwarka region registers one snake bite a day in Delhi. Dogs are predators for burrowed animals and such dangerous reptiles and are known to have been a keystone species by many ecologists in maintaining the epizootic balance of the region. Dolly does not produce litter as she and Chotu have been sterilized and inoculated for rabies by the MCD. This makes them less aggressive towards general humans unless anyone is a threat to the residents, these dogs now consider as their own pack leaders. So it has been a common practice for years now, to feed Dolly and Chotu in turns, so they recognize their own residents and protect each one of them from any potential threat including other dogs which are often driven away by Chotu even before they enter this colony.

Chotu is also a favorite of the children who pat, sit, and cuddle this big, dark brown, scary looking dog in the way they like. And while he enjoys his daily tummy rubbing treats, he pays them back with love and protection by accompanying many to their bus stops and metro stations in the morning. Many are seen talking to these dogs in their own language which is easily understood by these canines as if they were Homo sapiens themselves. Many strangers often find Chotu and Dolly barking endlessly at night or running after vehicles and complain of the same to the residents. But the residents shrug it away by telling each one, this chronicle of Dolly and Chotu without missing any detail and on every single opportunity made available to them. They now associate the running of dogs with that incident, clearly.


While the barking and chasing at night by Dolly & Chotu continues and may be a nuisance for strangers and thieves, but the residents enjoy such chases with a sense of belonging and ownership. And so it seems why the courts across the world have thus not been able to define the true meaning of the word “nuisance” for genuine reasons. Someone has rightly said, “neighbour’s envy may be owner’s pride”, so while we may endlessly continue to find correct answers to complex questions like, “How to end the dog menace?” or “What is really a dog menace?”, these canines nonchalantly would do what they have to do, in their own stride and thriving to be man’s best friend.

The joy of looking after ‘Poopy’ the pigeon

By Divya Kapur

About the author: Divya has trained as a wildlife rescuer in Sydney with Sydney Metropolitan Wildlife Services. She specialises in birds and that is where she derives the confidence to continue her work in this area after having moved back to Gurgaon. She would love to share her expertise and knowledge with like minded people. Those interested in learning tips about bird care, may please contact her on divya_kapur@hotmail.com

——–

As I sat outside in my garden, thinking of my pet bird that is in Sydney, awaiting paperwork before it flies to India, a pigeon flies out of a tree and falls on the ground, as if it ran out of ‘steam’.

'Poopy' - the Pigeon (Photo Credit: Divya Kapur)

I waste no time in jumping out of my chair to take a closer look. The pigeon sits still, showing no signs of wanting to fly away. As it sees me coming closer, it starts to walk away, looking for a dark corner for comfort and safety. I immediately knew that this poor fellow is not well. By this time, I also figured that it is a female.

I wait for it to get into a corner of my patio, just behind a pedestal fan. That is when I reach out with my right hand, grab her gently from behind and turn her upside down. I hold the pigeon’s head in the cup of my left hand to keep its eyes covered. Birds are very visual. It can go into a state of panic and even shock to see itself in the hands of a human being. By covering its eyes with one hand or even with a muslin cloth, I am able to calm the bird. This way I am better able to examine it for injuries.

As I had suspected, the pigeon has hurt itself on his right foot. Not bad but it had scratched itself enough to bleed. Fortunately for me, my very helpful daughter, equally passionate about birds and animals, is home because of summer holidays. She is quick on her heels to get some cotton wool, clean water in a plastic bowl (small container in which you get soan papdi…we also believe in and encourage recycle, reuse and reduce policy) and Dettol. We gently cleaned the wound with clean water, making sure all along that the bird is calm and not stressed. I still have its eyes covered for that.  Then I cleaned it with cotton wool dipped in diluted Dettol water mix.

I then put the pigeon back in the corner where it felt safe and secure, while my daughter and I got busy in preparing a large box to house the pigeon. After all, it wouldn’t be a sound idea to leave her out in the open, unable to fly and unsupervised.

I got a cardboard box. Thank God I have plenty as I have recently moved from Sydney. Any plastic basket with holes will also do. Make sure it is large and not claustrophobic. Go by your own instinct. I lined the bottom with plastic bag, topped with a couple of newspaper sheets. Now comes the interesting bit. My daughter then spread soft leaves and grass on one half of the box, bearing in mind what the pigeon is used to in the wild. The idea is to provide the bird with what it is familiar with, to make it feel ‘at home’.

'Poopy' feels at home (Photo credit: Divya Kapur)

In one corner we put another reusable plastic container for water. Remember to put some clean stones at the bottom of the bowl so it does not tip over. Then we spread some bajra all around for the pigeon to feed on. We then carefully picked the bird up again, as before and put him in his new home to recover.

The wounds healed in about two weeks. By now, the pigeon was active and alert. She would spring up to see us walk by. Every morning and evening, I would put the box outside in the garden for the pigeon to get fresh air and see other birds. During the day, the box was placed in a covered shady spot. The water was cleaned every two days and the paper was changed every 3-4 days, depending on how much mess our little feathery patient made.

It’s been a month now and I lovingly call her ‘Poopy’. Unfortunately, the poor bird has a problem with its right wing. But the good news is that she is out of her box. She has found comfort on top of our linen cupboard and that is where she lives along with its water and food bowl. I am not surprised at her natural instinct to be above us and in a cosy corner. That is how they live when outside.

I am still looking for an avian specialist to diagnose the problem correctly and suggest the next course of action for us. Meanwhile, I am not stressed about whether it will survive or not. That is beyond my control. All my family and I can do is keep it safe because a bird that can’t fly is a bird that will either become another bird’s dinner or run over by a car.

For now, all you bird lovers out there, I am sure you now know that it’s not difficult to look after a pigeon and definitely does not cost anything at all. You can do it yourself in the comfort of your own home. . There are lots of birds that get injured, are sick or abandoned and orphaned. It’s not difficult to look after them. All it needs is some basic knowledge, lots of enthusiasm and love.

The story of ‘Magic’ and his rescue

‘Magic’ is another of our rescued dog stories, for the story of his rescue and recovery is nothing but ‘magical’.

Last year when the Commonwealth Games 2010 ended, it was time to release the street dogs back into the games venue areas where they were picked up from and kept in at shelters for the period of the games.

The Municipal Corporation of Delhi’s SSCBC (Society for Stray Canine Birth Control) decided then that to ensure transparency, the release of all dogs back into their respective areas will be photographed and video-graphed as evidence to comfort all that ‘no dog was dislocated from its original territories’ in conformation with the Animal Birth Control Rules 2001 (drafted under the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act 1960).

On one such Dog-release exercises happening in South Delhi, I had volunteered to be part of the Release Team and photograph/videograph the release of the dogs as per the details we had of their respective areas at the time of picking them up.

As we were releasing some dogs in the area of R.K Puram, a middle-aged lady came up to me and pointed to a dog that had taken shelter in a shop of his rag-dealer husband. She told me ‘Take him, he has lost his eye’. I asked what happened and went close by, only to see something that I had not imagined. The left side of this male dog’s face was completely chewn apart by maggots and so was his left eye and we all could literally peep into his jaw, see his tongue and it was to say the least, a painful sight.

I requested the MCD Dog Catchers who were accompanying me in the Release vehicle to help catch that dog, but this was not a rescue for the faint-hearted and they couldn’t catch him and he ran far far away.

MCD’s dog catcher tries to catch the maggot infested dog ‘Magic’ but he resists the catching attempt and runs away -Image Copyright: Jaagruti

Next day morning, we at ‘Jaagruti’ decided to make another trip to that area as that lady had shared with me that the maggot-infested dog stays in and around their shop only.

After a few minutes of searching for him, we were able to locate this dog, but now came the big challenge of how to win this dog’s confidence and pick him up to keep him in our car…we had done this before, but this time around we needed some help and help did come to us in the form of the rag-dealer husband of that lady, who was friendly with that dog and helped pick him up and place him in our car. We had used the tried and tested trick of covering his eyes with a cloth and tying a leash around his neck…but then mayhem was to follow as this dog kept running up and down in our car and was scratching his face with the windowpanes, visibly in pain with the maggots tearing into his flesh, oozing blood all over.

We then called upon the ambulance from the Animal Hospital we at ‘Jaagruti’ support through monetary and in-kind contributions and requested them to help us with this rescue case. To our good fortune, their ambulance was nearby…and then we were successfully able to transfer this dog from our car into the ambulance and off he was sent to the hospital.

‘Magic’ after being put in the Animal Ambulance- Image Copyright: ‘Jaagruti’

In the case of any other animal hospital in any part of Delhi or the world, such a severe case of maggot infested dog would have perhaps been euthanized or as they say’ peacefully put to sleep’ and we at ‘Jaagruti’ were prepared to hear that from our trusted vet too, but that wasn’t to be as the docs decided to give it a shot and then began the ‘magical’ treatment of this dog, whom we chose to name ‘Magic’…perhaps because his recovery was magical news for us and also because the name of the dreaded maggots who made this dog’s life hell started that way as well!

As ‘Magic’ underwent treatment, on day 1 his maggots and wound were cleared, on day 2 he was put on drips because with all the maggot clearing medicines going into his mouth, he had stopped eating food through his mouth…the glucose drips continued till day 4 and then came the good news, that Magic had started taking his food himself..

‘Magic’ on the road to recovery at the Animal Hospital – Image Copyright: ‘Jaagruti’

Another month of treatment and recovery followed and on Day 40, he was released back into his area where he was welcomed back by the area residents, all astonished and pleased that he had recovered and so were we!

‘Magic’ in the ambulance post recovery and before being released back into his area -Day 40 (Image Copyright: ‘Jaagruti’)

‘Desty’ – Destiny’s child!

For all animal cases that we get to attend directly to at ‘Jaagruti’, we just prefer to give them a name rather than referring to them as an anonymous dog or any other creature. But that name is just for us so that on platforms like this blog, we can share that animal’s story with you. We make it a point not to call that animal being treated out with that name, lest the animal gets used to it and then has no one to call it out when he goes back to his/her life on the street after spending his days of recovery either with us or at a boarding or at an animal hospital shelter.

Now, to who is Desty?

Desty is the name we gave to a street dog who landed out of nowhere at our doorsteps a few months back, we were alerted to his presence by the barking and screaming of the other dogs that live on our street. Desty was a new dog, we hadn’t seen him anywhere near the stretch of our colony or the colonies adjacent to ours!

And visibly as we could make out, Desty was unwell. He resisted the barking of our area’s street dogs and made himself comfortable next to our doorstep, we thought he won’t make it and won’t eat, but then when we placed a bowl of milk next to him so that we could examine him, he gulped it in seconds as if he was thirsty for ages…we gave him another bowl and he gulped it again. He was clearly in no mood to go anywhere and he just stayed put over there for the next two days and we kept feeding him. He had no visible signs of injury, but then we noticed something, he was showing signs of twitching and was coughing, symptoms characteristic of early stages of Canine Distemper.

'Desty' as we saw him on Day 1- Image Copyright: 'Jaagruti '

Since we were feeding him, he trusted us enough to lift him and put him in the car to take him to our vet for examination or perhaps when we now look back, we think this was what Desty had come to our doorsteps for!

As the vet examined him, our fears were proved true, Desty was indeed showing signs of  Canine Distemper, but the good news was that this was perhaps the initial stage and as per our trusted vet’s advice, we shifted him to the isolation ward of the animal hospital we support and there, under the supervision of our trusted vet, began Desty’s ‘homeopathic’ treatment, a specially designed course designed by human homeopathic doctor by the name of  Dr. Shukla who works out of Noida, comprising of homeopathic medicines like Distemperium and Agaricus mixed in strict-secret proportions by him and given every few hours.

Within a span of 10 days, Desty was fit and fine again and we decided to leave him on the street at the very car parking spot where we had first noticed him prior to him coming on his own to our house doorsteps!

We had opted to release him back on the street in the early hours of the morning, so that he could safely chart his way back to whichever area he belonged to and sure enough he did.

'Desty' before being released back on the street-Post-treatment (Day 12) - Image Copyright: 'Jaagruti '

We kept thinking about Desty as we couldn’t locate him again after that morning, perhaps this dog was just destined to come to our doorsteps on his own to get himself treated of Distemper, a life threatening disease with no cure if not detected and cured in the early stages of infection. And that is why we chose to name him ‘Desty’.

We were in for another surprise a month down the line, we noticed Desty next to our home yet again, this time hale and hearty and even showing his teeth to the dogs that inhabit our street. We came out, noticed him and remembered him and then he looked at us and sprinted away…we guess he had only come to tell us that he was fine and happy now and to put us at ease.

It is these little inexplicable and often ‘divine’ moments of satisfaction and joy of seeing an animal you helped treat back on its feet again that uplifts our sagging spirits to keep on in our efforts to help those who can’t help themselves.

A school presentation, a Teacher, Delhi Fire Service and a rescued Pigeon

Life is a puzzle which gets deciphered when we look back and connect the dots. When I was in school, I had yearned for people to come over and talk to us about animals and environment but no one did, I tried to do it myself-telling my fellow classmates about not using polybags to dump kitchen waste as it kills a cow and clogs our drains, but no one listened….probably I didn’t communicate the right way or perhaps that was because our teachers didn’t reinforce what I said or probably because no one had the time to think about ‘going green’ as that buzzword wasn’t around at that time, neither was ‘Environment’ a career option as my School counsellor was clueless when I went and asked her about it.

Nevertheless growing up, I had always harboured deep within me a dream and a desire to go back to my school and speak to students and teachers therein on subjects pertaining to animals and environment because this is all I had always wanted to do and this is one of the reasons ‘Jaagruti’ was born…

And who says, dreams don’t come true, they do take time but I believe they do come true…and sometime back I had the opportunity to go back to my school and address the students in there not once but twice on subjects close to my heart, once on ‘Waste Management’ and the second time around I had the opportunity to address an Eco-Club seminar which was attended to by eco-club teachers from about 15 more schools and a group of Eco-club students from Classes 9-12. The focus of this interaction with teachers and students was to apprise them of the little things they can share with their colleagues/students/classmates on what all we as ‘individuals’ can do in our daily lives to help street animals and care for the environment.

One of the many things I had touched upon in this interaction was how many birds-eagles/kites, crows, mynahs and pigeons often become victims of kite strings-the glass manjhas/threads used by people to fly their kites high into the sky.

Though the kite flying games end, these kite strings often end up tearing through many a birds wings, either while they navigate through the open skies or when later on when these birds perch on the tree branches-their tiny claws/legs and wings remain susceptible to be trapped in the strings left wound around tree branches forever…

Someone in the audience that day in my former school was listening carefully to what I was saying and that was Ms. Rajbir Kaur, a teacher from a neighbouring school who was faced with a similar situation a few weeks later and that is when she called us over on the ‘Jaagruti’ helpline.

As Ms. Kaur’s family was attending to guests, the little kids in the family spotted a pigeon hung upside down from the branch of a Eucalyptus tree, the kids tried and tried along with their father of ways to get the pigeon down, but the tree was so far away from any houses’ balcony and the branches were too high, that it was not within reachable distance from the common ladders and poles we all have in our homes and they were now feeling helpless.

Ms. Kaur called us over, and after listening to the story thus far, we just gave her one calm advice to follow-to call the Delhi Fire Service on 101 and request them to send over their Fire Brigade as their long ladder will help. The Delhi Fire Service staff has time and again helped people help birds stuck in such situations and needless to say when Ms. Singh called 101, they were prompt in sending their Fire Brigade over….just that there was one thing she missed telling them…which is what height the pigeon was stuck on and thus the Fire Brigade that came didn’t have a ladder that long to reach the pigeon. And it was then that we all had to sincerely request the Delhi Fire Service staff to call for the Fire Brigade with a longer ladder and they agreed after initial hesitation. Their hesitation was that since this was a festival day and there could be fire emergencies in the city, how could they be here saving a bird…we assured them that if there is any such emergency; we will let them go and may be God will be kind enough to spare Delhi of any fire disasters and then they agreed :)

The Delhi Fire Service then called upon their most prized possession ‘The Bronto Skylift’, a new entrant into their fleet of Fire Brigades and then began the story of a heroic rescue of nothing but a pigeon who was hanging upside down and still uptil then making everyone wonder whether it was even alive!

But then, as soon as the Bronto Skylift’s ladder reached near that branch, the Pigeon started fluttering its wings in hope and excitement as if to convey that it was well alive and kicking!

The Delhi Fire Service staff got a heroic applause as they brought the pigeon safely down and then taking it to Ms. Kaur’s residence even helped cut the kite string which was wound around its wing, in such a neat manner that there was no injury caused to the pigeon, now named ‘Hero’ by Ms. Kaur’s husband-Mr. Singh. Since it is not advisable to release birds like Pigeons at night time, Mr. Singh’s family gave ‘Hero’ a nice place to rest, grains and water to feed on and even put on their water cooler (while switching the fan off) so that ‘Hero’ has a restful sleep.

Next morning, we went and took the pigeon for further examination to Abhinav at Fauna Police and then the next day since the pigeon was all good and healthy, Mr. Singh got him back on his way back from work and released it onto his balcony.

And then, the anticlimax happened, ‘Hero’ actually ended up being a ‘Heroine’, which is that Pigeon wasn’t a male but rather a female pigeon who then chose to use an abandoned nest atop an almirah placed in Mr. Singh’s balcony to lay her eggs :)

The story of Heroine’s rescue and release has been delightfully documented in the video shared by Mr. Singh with us below. Have a look!

Mr. Singh had this to say, “By saving this bird’s life, the Delhi Fire Service has shown that they respect and value all life (humans and animals) and that is what all of us need to learn and imbibe”.

Then onwards Mr. Singh’s family has also taken the initiative of getting all of their colony’s street dogs vaccinated against Rabies, which were uptil then only being fed by the area residents, but they took on additional responsibility and expense to make sure that these dogs are now vaccinated as well.

It is said that doing one good deed prompts you to do the next one and thus, the spirit of compassion continues to flow!

Adopt a dog, stay medically fit

By Ipshita Mitra (Courtesy: The Times of India, dated 14 July 2011) 

They are cuddly, cutesy and furry but that’s not about it. More than just friends, dogs can be your medical guardians too.

Dog ownership can assure you a healthy living sans the dreadful pills. And yes, more than often they take on the role of teachers too. Pets double up as friends and add novelty to your life. Here’s how:

Pets chase loneliness away
Pet companionship has therapeutic value. When everything seems to fail, there is chaos and distress everywhere, a tight hug or an emotional release with your pet heals you in no time. When a bad fight with a friend, an unexpected tiff with your lover or a verbal brawl with parents unsettles you, a pet comes to your rescue. Shubhankar Paul, a media professional, says “In times of gloom and disturbance, a gentle caress of my dog washes off all my worries. It strengthens me to face situations with confidence.”

When you bid goodbye to your pet in the morning before leaving for work, you are well aware that somebody would be waiting to greet you at the door once you return after a hard day’s work. The unconditional love that a dog gives you transcends all definitions of love that in human relations is governed by ‘terms and conditions apply’.

Heart condition? Bring home a pet
Allopathy may disappoint you but pet therapy works wonders and is medically approved.

Dr. Stephen Sinatra, cardiologist and nutritionist in his book Heart Sense for Women says for heart disease patients, grief and loneliness can be debilitating. According to the study by Sinatra, heart patients who own pets have a higher survival rate than the ones who don’t. Moreover, pets help in reducing blood pressure and stress.

If you have an ailing elderly person at your residence without adequate company, a pet is an apt solution. Be assured of positive results with pet companionship. No medical bills and absolutely free of side-effects!

Psychological security
We are often put out by unnecessary judgmental behaviour of others. But a pet never imposes moral dictates on you. He listens silently and responds with adorable gestures that calm you down.

Connecticut psychologist Herbert Nieburg, author of Pet Loss: A Thoughtful Guide for Adults and Children confirms that “pet ownership is psychologically beneficial”. Pets offer you comfort without asking for anything in return.

Avers Srishty Chaudhary, a media professional and owner of two Pomeranian dogs, “It is like writing a diary entry where you can pour your heart out without the fear of being reprimanded or jeered at. Whenever my mother scolded me, my dog would cast an angry stare at her only to prove his allegiance towards me. And I would feel so secure.”

With pets come responsibility
Pets are popular across age groups. Research shows that married couples who are without kids often prefer to adopt a pet to cultivate a sense of responsibility in the process of nurturing their pet.

Children and the elderly are among others who bask in the company of a pet, preferably a dog. Dr. Rima Sehgal, psychologist and counsellor says that “a pet in the house exudes a healthy atmosphere and makes you learn the nuances of nurturing and responsible behaviour.”

Pets are a blessing for kids with working parents and no siblings. Inanimate toys can never substitute a living, receptive and responsive companion. Pets are a vibrant company therefore.

Learning tolerance
Besides making you more responsible, a pet has a sobering effect on you. It’s a beautiful feeling to share with your dog, from food to love of your family members, not to mention, giving in readily to its attention-seeking antics. An impatient self is healed in a pet’s company.

With them you laugh, learn and love. Bring home a pet and discover the joys for yourself.

 

The story of a gentleman and a stray dog

By  Biswadeep Ghosh (Courtesy: The Times of India dated July 13, 2011)

He may not have a name. He might be a stray dog. But, he deserves every ounce of love he gets.

He stays near my house. He doesn’t have a name, must be six-seven years old, and seems to smile whenever he sees me. He hates dog food, but loves biscuits. We meet each other once a day, every day. He waits for me, for a hug, for the biscuits. I feed him. After he is through, I leave the place. He follows me till I reach my door and ring the bell. Then, he leaves me, and goes away. That is his way of saying ‘thank you’ I think. When I am at home, playing with my cocker pup, there are times when his sight intrudes upon my mind. A nice, decent fellow that he is, I start missing him.

I am not the only person who feeds a stray dog every day. Millions like me do the same, finding time for their much-loved four-pawed beauties who seek a few moments of affection every day. We see them trudging on the streets, looking for food here and there. When they are with friendly company, they play, making happy noises that we can’t help but notice. When ruthless passers-by throw stones at them, they try to dodge. At times, they succeed. At times, they don’t. When strangers enter society buildings, they are alert enough to bark the moment they sniff unfamiliarity. Some become so attached that they care for us in their own characteristic way. Only, it comes to them so naturally that they don’t even realise they do.

The gentlemanly dog is one of them. Whenever my vehicle slows down, I see him running towards me. When I buy his daily packet of biscuits – a big one, since he is a big dog – he waits patiently next to me. There are days when he is extremely hungry. I can sense that when he polishes off the entire pack much faster than he normally does. On such occasions, I buy him another pack. He finishes that, too, with joy and gratitude.

Apart from my pet who is a son to me, this dog with no name is someone I really love. Something in his large eyes tells me he is a good soul. I don’t know how many of us can say that about our own selves.

Elbow rashes in street dogs- the ‘magic’ cure!

Our patient: A dog with elbow rashes in his forelegs

See the photograph above, it is of our neighbourhood street dog who had been having these elbow rashes in both of his fore legs, as time passed by and rains  intensified last year this infection spread on to the whole of his front forelegs. We took him to one doctor after the other and met with no success, he was repeatedly administered antibiotics and we were advised to orally administer him Avil (Anti-allergc drug), Ampoxin, Topclav and so many other medicines at various intervals by so many of the vets we consulted, but over a period of 3 months we met with no success at all!

 
But finally a vet asked us to follow the below mentioned external treatment protocol for this infection every alternate day and we are happy to share that after a month and a half of diligently following this medical treatment protocol, this dog was cured of its elbow rashes and thats the reason we wish to share it with you all:
 
1. Wear gloves
 
2. Mix a few crystals of Potassium Permanganate (KMNO4) in filtered water. (You can get these crystals from your local chemist shop). KMNO4 is a disinfectant.
 
3. We then cleansed the whole infected portion on this dog’s forelegs with cotton swab dipped in the Potassium Permanganate solution.
 
4. We then took an empty syringe and filled it with H2O2 (Hydrogen Peroxide)- you can get a suspension for this at your local chemist shop.
 
5. Then it was time to gently release the H2O2 droplets from the syringe onto the infected portion cleansed with KMNO4 solution, we saw bubbles but that wasn’t a reason to worry, as its just a chemical reaction happening between H2O2 which is a mild acid with KMNO4…but we identified that perhaps it is this ‘magic’ step which actually helped kill the infection causing microbes on this dog’s legs.
 
6. After having repeated step 5 for all infected portions on this dog’s legs, we were advised to rub oodles and oodles of  Himax ointment (An Ayurvedic veterinary ointment) mixed with equal portions of Spectrazole ointment onto the whole of the infected portion. We made sure we were wearing sturdy gloves during this process.
 
7. We repeated steps 1-6 every alternate day for this dog and the result is there to see in the photograph below.

The elbow portion of the dog-post treatment

 
 

Ear infections in Street Dogs-our experience at treating them

Come rains, comes humidity and mositure in the air, the ideal weather for microrganisms like bacteria, yeast and fungi to proliferate. How often have you seen a dog walking with his/her head titled to one side or continuously shaking its ear? If you do see any dogs exhibiting the above symptoms or scratching its ear with a wall or body of a car, our advice is do not ignore that sight, if you do care for the well being of that street dog…for this could well be an indicator that the dog is battling with a microbial infection in its ear.

We at Jaagruti had two such doggy patients to attend to in the past month and in this post we share what we did to get their infection treated.

Case 1: We saw a dog walking with its head tilted to its left, he was badly shaking his head and was in visible pain. On closer examination we found that his external ear had pus accumulated in it. Though the dog was friendly, we took no chances and tied his mouth with a cloth string and then using cotton dipped in Betadiene solution went about clearing his ear as much as possible of the accumulated pus, which if not removed would have served as an ideal breeding ground for more insects and flies and could have also resulted in maggot infestation in the dog.

We kept on changing the cotton swab till we were able to clear most of the pus and then we tried to trace the location from where the pus was oozing out from and noticed that it was coming out from a spot in the ear lobe. The first aid treatment in the form of clearing of this pus from the dog’s ear visibly relieved the dog and he was now much ata ease and trusted us to put him in our car and take him to our consultant vet. At the vet’s clinic, after an examination it was found out that this dog was suffering from Yeast infection in its ear and that was what had caused the Pus. At the vet’s clinic, a thorough cleansing of both the ears of that dog was done (yes, we got both ears cleansed, even though the pus infection was just in one year), two  injections followed, one an antibiotic and the other being Belamyl (a Multi-Vitamin injection) and then the doctor advised us to administer ear drops into the Dog’s ear for a course of 3 days.

We were advised by our vet to administer Cipla’s Otibact Ear Drops into that dog’s ears-these ear drops contain Enrofloxacin and Silver Sulfadiazine, costs Rs. 80 for a 15 ml bottle. These ear drops are used in case of canine external ear infections complicated by yeast/fungi/bacteria.  The ear drops look more like a white emulsion and contains drugs that inhibit the multiplication of the microbe by acting on the enzymes involved in that microbe’s DNA Replication process). The dose prescribed by our vet was 4-5 drops of Otibact once daily targeted into the ear lobe and then we were advised to rub the ear so that the drops get rubbed into the ear skin properly.

We religiously administered these ear drops, and the dog’s ears were fit and fine again and had even regained their original shape and were back to being standing ears again from the floppy ones! :)

We also learnt that ear infections are more common in dogs with floppy/bent ears than those with standing ones as shade and mositure are easily available in a floppy ear which are ideal conditions for microbial infection, whereas in dogs with standing ears, there is more access to air and light.

Case 2: Involved a middle aged female dog who was continuously scractching her ears and shaking her head vigorously. On closer examination of her ears, we found a coat of dry powdery looking ear skin in both her external ears. To fix this problem we followed a simple course of administering her a set of ointments for a period of 3 days before she was fit again.

Treatment course followed is mentioned below:

Wear gloves, muzzle the dog and then squeeze ample amount of Spectrazole (anti-fungal, anti-microbial) ointment , mixed with some bit of Betadiene ointment onto the gloves and rub it onto the inner part of the dog’s ear flaps, then gently rub the dogs ears from outside in such a way that the ointment spreads itself all over the infected portion. Just make sure that you do this with gentle hands, because even street dogs like us, don’t like their ears pulled for no reason :)

Please remember that since we are dealing with street dogs in both the above cases and if you happen to be doing something similar, it is important that our first effort is to restrain these dogs using a muzzle or a cloth string, if need be even gently cover their eyes with dark wet cloth, this will help calm the animal down while you put drops or rub ointment into their ears.

Limping Dogs: A treatment we used that worked!

Many a time we at Jaagruti have come across street dogs with a limp in either their hind (back) legs or the fore (front) legs. The cause for these limping legs is not difficult to guess, more often than not it is inflicted by humans whereby dogs get hit by vehicles or often it is self-inflicted when the severely territorial street dogs acting macho enter into ‘dog fights’ to shoo other street dogs from intruding into their areas.

But, since it is practically impossible to pick up all limping street dogs and take them to a vet to get antibiotics and painkillers administered for a course of 3-4 days, we were looking for a simpler method to treat such dogs, a method which gives us the flexibility to treat them on the street with minimal fuss.

Thankfully, while exploring such options, our consultant vet suggested we try out a veterinary liquid syrup based medicine named, ‘Petcam’/now renamed ‘Melcam’ (Brand of CIPLA) or ‘Melonex’ (Brand of INTAS). For Rs.50-Rs.80 for a 10 ml bottle depending on the brand one buys, it was and is not a strain on the pocket either.

As we purchased our first bottle of Petcam/Melcam/Melonex, our eyes noticed its key ingredient, which was ‘meloxicam’ (also the more generic name of this medicine). Meloxicam is a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID). It is also the substitute advised in place of ‘Doclofenac’.

A poster being used to make public aware of using 'Meloxicam' in place of 'Diclofenac' as a veterinary drug/painkiller (As Diclofenac administration to cattle is being held responsible for the decline in vulture population that feeds carcasses of cattle that had been administered Diclofenac)

‘Diclofenac’ is a veterinary drug (commonly used in cattles) which is now being held responsible for the decline in India’s vulture population, prompting the Indian Government to ban its sale. Latest news reports and studies validate say that this ban on use of Diclofenac has proved effective.

Now coming back to how we have used the bottle of Petcam medicine to cure 6 dogs with limping legs over the past few months.

Petcam, as the bottle cover says is used for control of osteoarthritis assoiated (i.e bone related) pain in dogs. Petcam Oral Solution can be used on a long-term and continuous basis (but what is advised is that you follow the veterinary doctor’s advice depending upon the severity of the limp), as obviously Petcam can’t cure fractured bones!

Petcam-Oral-Suspension-Meloxicam

Follow the directions for using this medicine provided by your veterinarian. Use Petcam Oral Suspension exactly as directed.

The dosage of Petcam to be given to street dogs is easily adjusted according to the dog’s weight. This medicine box comes with a syringe marked with gradation from 1ml to 10 ml.

The medicine is usually administered as a single dose of 0.2 mg/kg body weight (i.e 1ml of this suspension for every 10 kg of dog weight) on the first day of treatment. Thereafter it is administered once daily as 0.1 mg/kg.

For example: If the dog weighs around 30 kgs, the dose that needs to be given to him on Day 1 would be 6 ml followed by 3ml doses for the next 2-3 days. Normally clinical signs of improvement would be noticed by  Day 4 of treatment.

The oral suspension can be either mixed with food or placed directly into the dog’s mouth. The way we have preferred to give it is by putting it in diluted milk placed in a plastic vessel.

Chintu

Of the many dogs we have administered Petcam succesfully, one of the cases has been that of Chintu, a street dog who with his habit of sleeping underneath cars was constantly limping around with one or the other leg of his. Chintu’s condition was brought to our attention by two families caring for him residing on the ground floor of the very building whose stairs are Chintu’s home. Beginning with a 4 ml dose on Day 1 followed by 2ml doses over the next three days, we were successfully able to get Chintu back on his feet.

Another case was that of a dog, whom we found on a road divider next to  Dilli haat, Pitampura, he had such a severe limp that one of his hind legs was completely bent and lifted upwards.

On Day 1 we gave him a 6ml dose of Petcam followed by 3 ml doses for the next few days till he was able to put his feet back on the ground.

Petcam can also be served in a minimal dose of just 1-2 ml mixed in diluted milk (every alternate week) to an old street dog in your area who is having troubles walking either due to his age or due to his weight.

However, like all medicines, it is advised that you use Petcam with discretion. Please also note that it is not recommended to use Petcam Oral Suspension in pregnant and lactating dogs or in dogs younger than 6 months of age.

In defense of the street dogs of Kashmir

http://www.thepetitionsite.com/1/jkmassculling/
 
Dr. Asgar Samoon, Divisional Commissioner, Kashmir, had issued orders in March 2011 to kill all street dogs of Kashmir.

A qualified veterinarian, he has admitted to the Animal Welfare Board  of India, to requesting the ‘public’ to identify rabid dogs !

He obviously hasn’t let his veterinary knowledge come in his way. Carnage is reported to be occurring in Kashmir everywhere. Dogs are being poisoned and killed brutally in the name of rabies which is nowhere to be found or identified.
Mass graves are being dug and dogs being dumped into that. Any neighbour who has a grudge against another with a pet has now the licence to kill that pet dog.

Animal activists have demanded suspension of the Divisional Commissioner and appealed to the Veterinary Council of India to revoke his licence as he is not fit to be a vet. If you support this, please write to:
 
VETERINARY COUNCIL OF INDIA
A statutory body of Government of India established
under the Indian Veterinary Council Act 1984.
A-Wing, 2nd Floor, August Kranti Bhawan
Bhikaji Cama Place, New Delhi – 110066
Phone: 011-26184149, 26184354 Fax: 011-26182434
Email vciinfo@vhub.nic.in
 
 
AWBI has also send notice to Dr. Samoon which is attached here.

Below are presented a series of articles that explan why Kashmir needs its street dogs…in a state which has been marred by violence, bloodshed and terrorism all these years, this state provoked bloodshed of innocent animals will only bring in more misery to the state. Read on..

Article in Greater Kashmir

Srinagar needs its street dogs. Here’s why

Other opinion by Lisa Warden

Do you consider street dogs to be a barking, snarling, stinking menace? Do you wish they would all just get hauled off somewhere and be made to disappear? Perhaps you’re even one of the many people who support the poisoning of dogs. If so, then you are doing yourself and your family a distinct disservice. This is why:

People still die every year in India from rabies, the majority of those due to bites from infected dogs. Death from rabies is completely preventable; it’s a disease that has been eradicated in many parts of the world. Ironically, the best defense against rabies is not the absence of dogs, but their presence – the presence of vaccinated dogs, that is. Dogs that have been vaccinated against rabies actually serve to protect the human inhabitants of their neighborhoods from the disease.

How? Simple. Dogs are territorial creatures. They do not allow new dogs to migrate into their areas. If, in addition to anti-rabies vaccination, the dogs have been sterilized, they will not reproduce, and the dog population in your area will decrease naturally over time. The average life expectancy of a dog in urban India is only 3.4 years.

 The killing of dogs does not work as a population control policy. It has never worked anywhere in the world that it has been undertaken, even when the numbers of dogs killed are in the tens of thousands. This is because dogs are so fertile that they simply repopulate the existing habitat in the subsequent breeding season.

 Furthermore, in cities like Srinagar, where public sanitation is still a work in progress and there is ample garbage lying around, dogs perform an essential service, that of waste processing. Garbage is habitat. If there are no dogs in a place with lots of uncollected waste, nature will fill the vacuum with some other scavenger, inevitably one that is more problematic in its relationship to humans. Take what happened in Surat in 1994. The municipal authority made the decision to kill thousands of dogs. Cause led to effect: the rat population, all of a sudden blessed with a massive increase in available food (garbage), and thousands fewer predators (dogs), exploded. Bubonic plague eventually arrived on the scene, and hundreds of people were infected. Fifty-seven people died.

Are dogs ever a menace? Yes, and those that engage in bonafide, unprovoked, biting attacks on humans need to be removed from the population. This needs to be done by qualified animal welfare workers. However, the two most significant factors that result in dog bites – migration and mating – are actually exacerbated by killing or removing dogs, and failing miserably at the sterilization project.

Let me reiterate, if Kashmiris are serious about addressing the “dog menace” in their cities, killing dogs categorically will not work. This has been proven time and again the world over. The only solution that has been scientifically proven to eradicate rabies and decrease the street dog population has been large-scale sterilization and anti-rabies vaccination. Further, it is essential to the success of any intervention that the dogs be put back in their original locations following sterilization and anti-rabies vaccination.

 Whether you love dogs or hate them, it is in your best interests to let your neighborhood dogs live in peace exactly where they are. You just need to ensure your municipal authority does its duty by sterilizing and vaccinating those dogs. Things will not get better until 75 per cent of the street dog population of Srinagar has been sterilized, vaccinated against rabies and left in peace, and until the municipal authority implements proper waste management reform.

 (The author Lisa Warden is founder and director of DOGSTOP, a non-profit advisory group dedicated to rabies eradication and street dog population management in India. She also serves as advisor to ABC India, a pan-Indian organization devoted to the control of street dog populations throughout the country via large-scale sterilization and anti-rabies vaccination.)

Article in The Pioneer

Mass killing of loC that guard Kashmir

By Hiranmay Karlekar

The slaughter of street dogs in the Kashmir Valley calls for a full inquiry. The hapless animals served as watchdogs for the Army against infiltrators crossing the LoC and alerted security forces whenever danger was afoot.

The reported mass killing of stray dogs in Srinagar merits a serious probe. On September 22, 2009, a report in The Times of India by Ajay Sura had stated that stray dogs had become watchdogs for the Army against infiltrators crossing the Line of Control in Jammu & Kashmir. The report quoted Lt-Col NK Airy, spokesperson for the Army’s Tenth Division, as saying that these dogs recognised troops and local civilians and started barking whenever there was any movement of strangers. They were quick to train, easy to maintain, did not take a huge amount to procure and could not be recognised by the infiltrators as Army dogs.

Many Army officers have testified to the invaluable role of such dogs. One of them is Mr Habib Rehman, who began life in the Army and retired as the head of a well-known hotel chain. In his touching book, A Home for Gori, about a dog who adopted his family and became a deeply-loved member, he narrates how his love for dogs was awakened by his acquaintance with Bullet, which he made as a Second-Lieutenant posted in what is now Arunachal Pradesh. Every Army picket from the LoC in the north-west to Arunachal Pradesh in the north-east, had a dog like Bullet, a mongrel of Bhutia origin of the kind found all along the Himalayan ranges, as an additional member, rendering signal service in alerting it to an enemy’s approach and any other threats. A deep bond invariably develops between such canines and Army personnel.

In an article entitled The dog that did India proud in The Pioneer of March 24, 2007, Major-General Ashok Mehta (Retd) wrote fondly about Krupa, a Bakerwal puppy, who was picked up in 1963 and lovingly reared by a unit of the Gorkha Rifles serving along the LoC, then called the Ceasefire Line. Krupa did yeoman service not only with it but also the Sikh and Garhwal regiments that followed

Law enforcing authorities everywhere have acknowledged the important role played by stray dogs. As Director-General of Police, Andhra Pradesh, Mr Swaranjit Sen had advised police stations to adopt stray dogs for being alerted against approaching Maoists. Not surprisingly, Maoists in West Bengal had asked villagers to kill all village dogs. Even earlier, terrorists coming across the Line of Control had asked villagers close to it to kill their dogs; so had terrorists in Punjab.

The point in mentioning all this is the recent report in several newspapers of Sajjad Afghani, an important leader of Jaish-e-Mohammad, being killed along with this bodyguard, Omar Bilal, by the Jammu & Kashmir Police in an encounter on March 10. The reports quoted Mr RM Sahai, Inspector-General of Police, Kashmir, as saying that they were trying to set up a base in Srinagar “to carry out big strikes in the future on security force installations”. Was the killing of stray dogs meant to facilitate the strikes? The matter needs to be investigated because of the State Government’s shocking delay in entering into a partnership with the Animal Welfare Board of India in implementing the canine Animal Birth Control programme, the only effective means of controlling stray dog populations.

Terrorists have reason to oppose the programme which involves the neutering and vaccination (against rabies) of stray dogs and their return to where they had been picked up from. Implemented area-wise, it is calculated to taper off a city or State’s stray dog population as the neutered and vaccinated dogs live out their life-spans. This means that they will continue to remain in their areas for some years and continue to alert security forces to the approach of terrorists who, one hopes, would be routed by the time the dogs live out their biological life-spans.

On the other hand, as the Guidelines for Dog Population Management, jointly released by the World Health Organisation and the World Society for the Protection of Animals in 1990, killing never succeeds in providing a solution. What it can do, however, is a temporary reduction of stray dog populations in specific areas and thus help terrorist strikes. Is this the reason why some in Jammu & Kashmir oppose the implementation of the ABC programme and favour killing? If so, who are they? One needs to find out.

Article in The Pioneer

Stray dogs alert terrorists’ approach

By Hiranmay Karlekar

As several authorities cite that stray dogs warn of approaching terrorists, there is every possibility that terrorists are orchestrating not only a mass hysteria against stray dogs in Kashmir but also the demand for their killing

A report in Greater Kashmir of April 21, 2011, states, “The police top brass (on) Wednesday dispelled the notion given by some media agencies that the elimination of stray dogs would facilitate a rise in militancy”. The report did not mention the name of the agencies but carried quotes from my column in The Pioneer of 17 March on the mass killing of stray dogs in Srinagar, which clearly indicated that the reference was to the latter. The report further quoted a Deputy Inspector General of Jammu & Kashmir Police as saying that there was no relationship between stray dog populations and militancy, which were altogether different issues. It quoted the DIG, who described “dog menace” as a big issue”, as saying that it was for bodies like the Srinagar Municipal Corporation to “get rid of the problem.” The police was ready to help them in whatever way they wanted.

I will begin with reference to my column. The part of it which referred to terrorism in Kashmir, mentioned among other things, media accounts of the death of a JeM militant and his driver in an encounter with the police on March 10, and added, “The reports quoted Mr RM Sahai, Inspector General of Police, Kashmir, as saying that they were trying to set up a base in Srinagar ‘to carry out big strikes in the future on security force installations.’ Was the killing of stray dogs meant to facilitate the strikes?” Clearly, I was referring to efforts to set up bases to carry out big strikes and not, repeat not, increasing militancy. The two are entirely different things.

A terrorist strike is a single act. It is a part of militancy, which is a complex and wider phenomenon. At one level, militancy is the state of mind which is a blend of alienation, anger and aggression, prone to explode in violence. Since violence is an expression of militancy, the latter at the social context connotes a situation created by violence and the aggression associated with militancy. An increase in militancy means a rise in the incidence of militancy-related violence and the number of militants, as well as the spread and intensification of the aggressive mindset associated with militancy.

A single terrorist strike — or several strikes — however severe, need not indicate increasing militancy if more strikes do not follow. It is easier to organise a single or a couple of terrorist strikes than sustaining an increase in the level of militancy which requires the establishment of an infrastructure for procuring funds, arms, ammunition, explosives and the provision of electronic communication facilities through emails, phones and so on. It also requires propaganda for the militants’ cause, recruitment, training and indoctrination of terrorists and the organisation of shelters, false travel and identification documents, and storage of arms, explosives and so on. Nine-eleven in the United States and 7/11 (attacks on London’ underground subway system) in 2005 sent shockwaves throughout the world but did not lead to rising level of militancy in America and Britain.

Surprise is critical to the success of terrorist strikes. It can be neutralised by an efficient intelligence set-up which collects advance information and pre-empts terror strikes and destroys terrorists’ infrastructure. Equally, a strike can be neutralised if an alert is sounded as terrorists approach their target, enabling the security forces to repulse them. As several authorities cited in my column aver, stray dogs sound precisely such an alert. There is, therefore, every possibility that terrorists are orchestrating not only a mass hysteria against stray dogs in Kashmir but also the demand for their killing.

It is possible that the reporter, who did not understand what I had written, had also failed to understand what the DIG had said. If, however, the latter did say what he reportedly has, then he has betrayed a very narrow and conventional approach to counter-terrorism which ignores the complex and mutli-dimensional nature of the challenge. Referring to terrorism in India, Maj-Gen (Retd) Afsir Karim writes in his contribution entitled “Terrorism: the Indian Experience”, in Confronting Terrorism edited by Mr Maroof Raza, “The challenges of internal destabilisation, subversion, creation of administrative and economic chaos, and engineering divisions among diverse socio-political and ethnic groups cannot be met by conventional responses.” No further comments.

Cruelty to animals has serious repercussion

Courtesy: The Pioneer

By Hiranmay Karlekar

Research shows that cruelty to animals often transmogrifies into criminal misdeeds and adds to a city’s list of crimes. The new Commissioner of Delhi Police would do well to crack down on those who treat animals without compassion.

The new Commissioner of Delhi Police, Mr BK Gupta, doubtless has a host of problems on his plate, including coping with terrorism and keeping the crime rate down when sociological, cultural and economic factors combine with the national capital’s peculiar location to push it upward. Nevertheless, an area which requires urgent attention is cruelty to animals.

Though the Delhi Police has been somewhat sensitised in the matter over the last few years, much still remains to be done. It continues to show a tendency not to take complaints of cruelty to animals seriously. In a recent instance in Mukherjee Nagar, north Delhi, an FIR against people accused of brutally beating a stray dog to death was reportedly registered only after intervention by those who matter.

Navbharat Times_28 February 2011

 

Hindustan Times_28 February 2011

The tendency towards ‘burking’ (doctoring of crime figures through non-registration of FIRs or recording offences as less severe), which policemen display everywhere, is more evident in the case of animals.

The need for a change in the police’s approach to complaints of cruelty to animals is urgent because animals have right to live safely and happily and human beings, the most advanced and evolved of all living species, have a responsibility to ensure that they do so. It is also important because instances of people going scot free after violations of the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act of 1960, increases the tendency toward taking laws in general lightly, which is increasingly in evidence today. Equally significant, cruelty toward animals is indicative of aggression or latent or active criminality in a person and identification of such an individual and keeping him or her under surveillance is important for any police force.

Violent criminals tend to be cruel to both humans and animals. In their paper, ‘From Animal Cruelty to Serial Murder: Applying the Graduation Hypothesis’ (The International Journal of Offender Therapy and Comparative Criminology), Jeremy Wright and Christopher Hensley write that since the late-1970s, the FBI has considered animal cruelty as a possible indicator of future serial murder.

“The FBI documented the connection between cruelty to animals and serial murder following a study of 35 imprisoned serial murderers. The convicted murders were asked questions regarding their childhood cruelty toward animals. More than half of the serial murderers admitted to hurting or torturing animals as children or adolescents (Humane Society of the United States, 2001).”

They further point out that in 1987, animal cruelty was added to the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders-III (R) as a symptom of conduct disorder and was retained in the 1994 DSM-IV (American Psychiatric Association 1987, 1994). According to DSM-IIIR and DSM-IV description of conduct disorders, it commonly involves physical violence and harm to humans and animals.

In another paper entitled ‘Childhood Cruelty to Animals and Subsequent Cruelty to Humans’ (The International Journal of Offender Therapy and Comparative Criminology), Linda Merz-Perez, Kathleen M Heide, and Ira J Silverman write that cruelty to animals has long served as “a red flag in law enforcement circles with respect to extremely violent offenders” and state that “the expansive literature with respect to serial killers has often cited cruelty to animals as a precursor to the violence later targeted against human victims (Lockwood & Church, 1998)”.

They conclude that the study’s overall results support previous research efforts indicating “a relationship between cruelty to animals committed during childhood and later violence perpetrated against humans.”

Noting that the matter is complex, the authors say that cruelty to animals in children can provide insights into violent behaviour that may or may not translate later into violence against human beings and that cruelty to animals often reveal insightful analogies to violence against human beings. They cite the example of a “violent offender, a repeat sex offender” who had been “convicted of a crime against nature for sodomising a reformatory pig” and another, “convicted of sexual batter on a person 65 years or older”, described how he would throw stones at stray animals to “beat and hurt them as my parents hurt me”.

Prompt and effective action regarding offences affecting animals should, therefore, be considered a critical and integral part of policing. Mr BK Gupta would make a signal contribution to enhancing citizens’ security in Delhi if he can impress this on his force.

Priya, Dog breeding and the Income Tax Department

On a visit to an animal shelter a few weeks back, we met Priya, a female great Dane who was found abandoned on the road side by an animal ambulance. She was suffering from a tumour- a seemingly malignant one. Looking at her condition, it was quite evident that she was chucked out by a Dog breeder when she was no longer ‘a machine’ of use to him in his ‘puppy farm/factory’, i.e. ‘factories run by greedy humans in which female pedigreed dogs are repeatedly mated and bred so that they could give birth to puppies that can be sold at handsome rates’ and fill in the coffers of these ‘dog breeders’!

Photo copyright: 'Jaagruti'
Priya, a Female Great Dane abandoned by a Dog breeder to die on the streets- Her eyes say it all! Photo Copyright – ‘Jaagruti’ 

So, when dogs like Priya are no longer able to produce babies or turn sick beyond cure, these people who had over the years exploited her to give birth to pups repeatedly find her a burden and cose thereby to dump her on the roadside!

For a peep into the horrendous puppy mill trade, please look at the video below.

So, Next time you wish to adopt a dog, adopt for an Indian dog on the street or adopt one from a nearby shelter. Please do not buy a puppy ever because demands create supplies!

Remember ADOPT, Dont BUY!

Dog breeding in India is an unregulated business in alomost every city, a business that brings in huge profits to those who do it, be it big breeders carying this out in their farms, dog trainers who carry it out on their roofs atop their shanty quarters in areas like Dwarka Mod, Palam and across many such habitations in Delhi or even those who carry it out in their houses next doors to yours by repeatedly getting their pet dogs to mate and breed.

That is why news items like the ones below come as a breath of hope!

Income Tax Department issues directive to keep tabs on all breeders who sell newborn puppies for huge profit (Source: Mid Day, 23rd March 2011)

The Rs 500-crore pet dog business has come under the scanner of the Income Tax department.

The I-T department headquarters, New Delhi, has issued fresh directives to all its regional offices to keep tabs on all dog breeders who sell newborn puppies for huge profits.

All pet shops and known dog breeders are now under the surveillance of sleuths.

A senior I-T officer said, “Most canines of good lineage are sold at exorbitant prices and without any receipts. Some of the deals even run into crores.”

According to the I-T directive (copy available with MiD DAY), it has been noticed in recent years that pet shops have spread rampantly across the major cities.

These shops are technically licensed to sell animal food and accessories, but they also deal in canines and exotic birds to make a quick buck.

The order stated that it is suspected that a majority of these transactions are outside the tax net, so appropriate action should be taken against them.

Senior I-T officials, including Chief Commissioner P P Shrivastava, however, are tight-lipped about the directive and how they plan to crack down on the tax evaders.
 
According to I-T sources, the demand for exotic dogs increased after a cellular company used a pug in its advertisements.

According to sources, a 45-day-old pug is priced at more than Rs 40,000 in the open market.

Pet dealers at Crawford Market told MiD DAY that a Cocker Spaniel puppy is priced around Rs 7,000.
 
“Pet dealers are not sensitive to the health of the animals as they are more concerned about making money. Breeding is done regularly. This should be banned,” said Dr J C Khanna, member, Animal Welfare Board of India.

500 breeders

According to a modest estimate, there are more than 500 commercial dog breeders in Mumbai, Thane and Vasai. There are an estimated 7,000 such breeders across the country.

Dog breeding is a flourishing business in New Delhi, Chandigarh, Gurgaon, Andhra Pradesh, Himachal Pradesh and Chennai as well. The turnover is estimated to be around Rs 500 crore.

The volume of the business can be gauged from the fact that even a fake certificate to prove the breed of canine fetches between Rs 2,000 and Rs 3,000 on the streets of Mumbai. 

But, all dog breeders are not tax evaders. Mayur Shinde, owner of Shinde Kennel, Pune, said, “Dog breeding and selling is my full-time business. I give genuine receipts and also pay income tax regularly.”

Procedure to buy a puppy
Before buying a puppy, it is necessary to get a licence from the respective municipality. BMC charges only
Rs 100 as fees and Rs 200 for vaccine per year. The seller should be registered with the Animal Welfare Board of India (AWBI).

…and ‘doggedly’ Moti opposes the Gujarat Cement Plant

यह गली के कुत्ते ….

By आशीष पांडे

Courtesy: Navbharat Times Monday March 14, 2011

एक शख्स ने पेपर में छपने के लिए शिकायत भेजी कि हमारे मोहल्ले में कई आवारा कुत्ते हैं। जब देखो भौंकते हुए पीछे पड़ जाते हैं, सड़क पर आराम से चलने भी नहीं देते। मौका मिले तो काट भी लेते हैं। उन्होंने इस बात पर अफसोस भी जताया कि हमारे कानून ऐसे हैं कि आवारा कुत्तों को मारा नहीं जा सकता।

एमसीडी (दिल्ली नगर निगम) वाले मरे मन से उन्हें पकड़ते हैं लेकिन जल्द ही छोड़ना पड़ता है। बाहर निकलकर वह अपनी तादाद फिर बढ़ा लेते हैं। इनकी समस्या इतनी बेकाबू हो गई है कि इंसानों का घर से बाहर निकलना भी मुश्किल हो गया है।

बहुत ही जेनुइन प्रॉब्लम है। कुछ वैसी ही जैसी हमारे दफ्तर में काम करने वाली, हमारे मोहल्लों में रहने वाली और हमारे कॉलेजों में पढ़ने वाली लड़कियां, औरतें और बुजुर्ग महिलाएं रोज झेलती हैं।

फर्क बस इतना है कि आवारा कुत्तों की जगह हमारे समाज के मर्द ले लेते हैं। जो जब देखो फब्तियां कसते हुए पीछे पड़ जाते हैं, सड़क पर तसल्ली से चलने भी नहीं देते। मौका मिले तो रेप करने या मर्डर करने तक से नहीं चूकते। अफसोस ऐसे लोगों के खिलाफ हमारे पास मौत की सजा का कानून नहीं है।

जो मजबूरी कुत्तों को पकड़ने में एमसीडी की है, कुछ वैसी ही मजबूरी दिल्ली पुलिस की भी है। मरे मन से पकड़ तो लेते हैं लेकिन जल्द छोड़ना पड़ता है। समस्या इतनी बेकाबू हो गई है कि लड़कियों और औरतों का इस दिल्ली में घर से निकलना मुश्किल हो रहा है।

बहरहाल, कुत्तों से परेशान मर्दों का सुझाव है कि इसका एक ही इलाज है, सभी आवारा कुत्तों को मार दिया जाए। न रहेंगे कुत्ते न रहेगी समस्या। भले ही एकाध कुत्ते ही इतने खतरनाक हों जो काटने को आते हों, लेकिन वे मानते हैं कि सभी को मार देने से यह समस्या खत्म हो जाएगी।

उनकी इस सोच के आधार पर मर्दों से परेशान औरतें क्या सोचती हैं, वह बताने की जरूरत है क्या….

PAWS for a cause…

By Vasudha Mehta ‘Jaagruti’, A visit to PAWS (Plant and Animals Welfare Society), Thane

This is a month overdue report of my February 2011 visit to PAWS in Thane, an animal rescue and welfare organisation located in the Dombivli East, a suburb about 70 kms from Mumbai.

PAWS (Plant and Animals Welfare Society), was founded in 2001 by the young and dynamic Nilesh Bhanage and his college friends. However the journey began three years earlier in 1998, when Nilesh first saw an injured pigeon on his rooftop, his eye was hurt and crows were attacking that helpless pigeon. Nilesh and his friends intervened and rescued that pigeon, but even then they were clueless on how to treat that bird or the nearest place where they could take it to where it could be treated. It was then that Nilesh’s eldest cousin brother who runs a Photo Studio shared with him the details of a young lady named Anamika who used to come to this photo studio to get her photographs featuring animals developed from here. Following this, Nilesh decided to take that pigeon to Anamika’s place and that was the beginning of a new chapter in Nilesh’s life and in the life of many an animals in need in and around Dombivili.

Nilesh shared that, “Anamika was the one who taught me first aid for animals. The other lady that I am inspired by is Goodicia Vaidya who is now the Vice President of In Defence of Animals-Mumbai and who in 1998-99 used to drive an Animal Ambulance from Dombivli to Mahalaxmi,  distance of 90 kms one way and back every day tirelessly helping rescue animals in need”.

PAWS was formally registered in 2001 and it got a lease of life when Ahmednagar SPCA donated its ambulance to PAWS in the first formal year of its operations.

The journey thus far

In the world of animal welfare that I had closely observed as a volunteer and a working professional with this sector (which I pursued for about 3 years-2006 to 2008 after I finished studies), the thing that struck me most hard was that sadly, most Animal Welfare Groups don’t work together, there is too much infighting and back-biting that it can easily make a genuine animal lover feel disillusioned and heartbroken. But Nilesh and his team at PAWS were for me a ‘blessed’ exception to what I had seen and experienced thus far.

I first met Nilesh at the Asia for Animals Conference held in Chennai in 2007 and what struck me were his unassuming nature and modesty and his ever-so-willing intent of helping and guiding other groups and people like me who are keen to do more for animals. Also, what impressed me were Nilesh’s extremely professional and transparent ways of operating PAWS, his effective media outreach and awareness initiatives, the timeliness of PAWS newsletters and stories of the month, the transparency and accuracy with which he shared the figures of animals rescued, treated, released, vaccinated and even those that have died.

The fact that PAWS doesn’t have an animal hospital of its own has not been a deterrent in their efforts to help animals as Nilesh works with a tight knit staff and team of volunteers at PAWS and believes in administering on the spot first aid treatment for animals, wherever possible and for those who are severely injured, the PAWS ambulance takes on the onus of dropping the animal, domestic or wild at the designated shelters nearby. And once an animal is dropped for treatment at a veterinary hospital or shelter, Nilesh at PAWS ensures that he keeps following up on the animal’s health status and have it released when the animal has recovered and is in good health. By tying up with veterinary units doing Animal Birth Control programmes I nearby major districts, PAWS has also ensured that they get as many dogs in their area of operations sterilized over the years and all these first aid, and treatment based pick and drop services are catered to by the PAWS team of two ambulances and trained drivers cum paravets. PAWS runs two ambulances, Nilesh oversees the operations of the ambulance operating in Dombivili, Kalyan and Ulhasnagar and Anuradha Ramaswamy, a founder trustee of PAWS since its inception oversees the working of the PAWS ambulance in Thane, Kalwa and Mumbhra regions.

When Nilesh officially registered PAWS as a charitable society and trust in 2001, till uptil July 2010 (i.e. last year), Nilesh was doing a regular job in Mumbai as well besides managing PAWS and it is this that was most inspiring to us. For he wasn’t drawing any income from PAWS and its operations rather spending whatever he had personally, be it time, effort or money to still run an effective animal rescue organisation that was volunteer-driven.

And the above is what we at Jaagruti are also successfully aiming to do, thus despite me and my brother having regular full time jobs to cater to, we started ‘Jaagruti’ formally in end of 2009 and do try our best to spread awareness on these issues, treat and rescue as many animals in our area as possible while facilitating those we can’t besides hosting a 24 hour helpline of ours to attend to any and every animal and environment based query that could help guide a person to care for animals and help the environment in their own little ways.

Now, Nilesh works as the Manager of the India National Rabies Network with the Worldwide Veterinary Services and this job is helping him drive his income from also doing what he likes doing, which is helping animals besides devoting all of his attention and time to managing and expanding the operations of PAWS.

Staff and Volunteers at PAWS

PAWS has a network of 300 registered members connected via a google group and off these about fifty are dedicated volunteers who take turns to contribute their skills, be it rescuing all kinds of birds and animals, administering them first aid, designing brochures and other awareness literature and hosting fundraisers and awareness events etc.

PAWS looks after its volunteers by administering them preventive anti-rabies and tetanus vaccinations as part of its ‘Protect the Protectors’ vaccination drive, the volunteers are reimbursed their vehicle expenses post submission of the animal rescue form and the receipt from the animal hospital where the injured animal was dropped post rescue, the top 20 volunteers who help in rescuing animals are also aided by PAWS with a Medical/Health insurance policy and besides this PAWS has distributed First Aid kits to 5 volunteers in Dombivili who help out with Animal First Aid regularly and their medicine stocks are also replenished as and when they run out of it.

How we at Jaagruti wish that there were dedicated volunteers like this around in Delhi too! But I guess a big city like Delhi has its own problems where volunteering is a matter of convenience and not commitment, but we do hope things will change and one day, all other cities would also have dedicated volunteers like the ones PAWS can proudly boast off.

I also had the opportunity to participate at a Vaccination Drive organised at Kharegaon, Kalwa (Supervised by PAWS trustee Anuradha) in which with the help of 8 volunteers, lead by the just graduated Veterinary Doctor Anahita, 55 street dogs were administered Anti-Rabies vaccines, many animals were administered first aid, and many little pups dewormed. PAWS organises such Anti-Rabies vaccination camps every weekend in various areas of Thane District along with community support and help spread awareness amongst community residents as well on how best to live in harmony with street animals and look after them.

PAWS Volunteers at Anti-Rabies Vaccination Camp_20 Feb 2011 at Kharegaon (Courtesy: http://www.kharegaon.com)

Dr. Anahita, a just graduated veterinary student and PAWS volunteer helps vaccinate a street dog during the vaccination drive at Kharegaon on 20 February 2011 (Photo Credit: Vasudha Mehta/ 'Jaagruti')

 

Other than the volunteers, the full-time staff employed by PAWS includes two part time office assistants, two ambulance staff who act as both drivers and paravets and two rescue staff, both of who are young boys from orphanages housing kids orphaned in the Latur earthquake of 1993.

PAWS has a philanthropic side to its activities in the domain of ‘human welfare’ as well as we learnt that PAWS donated its first ambulance received in 2001 from SPCA Ahmednagar, which happened to be a matador to St. Josephs’s School which happens to be a schools nearby PAWS office where children with special needs are taught alongwith ‘normal ‘kids uptil Class 4. Besides this, PAWS regularly ties up with societies working with blind and under-priveleged children to organised joint fundraising activities through merchandize made by these societies.

Often, people like Nilesh and us at ‘Jaagruti’ and many who work for animal welfare are asked this question of why we care for animals when there are so many humans suffering? And to this my answer is that caring for voiceless animals doesn’t mean that we care less for humans, infact the activities done by PAWS for children with special needs and other societies working with orphaned, disabled and underprivileged children only goes to prove that people who think and care for animals and their suffering have a very high empathetic quotient, they are sensitive people who care equally deeply about humans and their suffering, it is just that they prefer volunteering their hands-on efforts to animals, because there are in any case man few people fighting for animals and their rights to live lives of respect and dignity.

Family

For anyone working for the cause of animals or for that matter, any alienated social cause, the support extended by ones’ immediate and extended family is of extreme significance. For working selflessly and tirelessly for a social cause takes away more than your time, it draws on your personal space and even your mental and emotional energies extensively. I say this for me and my brother-Vivek too for we couldn’t have continued with our and Jaagruti’s efforts had it not been for the immense moral and priceless support we had received from our mother. A strong and supportive family surely helps retain our state of mental and emotional well-being, staying grounded, practical and should I say ‘sane’!

And this is what prompted me to understand how Nilesh’s family thinks about the work he and PAWS does? Nilesh is the youngest of 7 cousin brothers (and a sister) in his big Maharshtrian family. His parents work in the Railways and are now very supportive of the work he and PAWS does.

Though initially Nilesh’s parents found the animal rescue work he did a bit strange! When I asked him how their perception about his and PAWS work changed, Nilesh shared, that, “One day my mother went to the vegetable seller in the nearby market to buy vegetables and it was then that, the vegetable seller and his wife spoke highly of the work PAWS does as we had once helped get their pet female dog sterilized and treated for which they week extremely grateful to my mother. That bitch of the vegetable sellers is now over 10 years old, hale and hearty. That incident changed my mother’s perception. Many such incidents followed wherever she went in our area and soon she and my father started feeling proud of what I did through PAWS.”

Nilesh’s family is extremely supportive of his efforts; his parents live in the floor beneath his in the building named ‘Savitri Sadan’ after his paternal grandmother. ‘Savitri Sadan’ was once a the big family home of Bhanage family but about a decade back, the family decided to convert it into a building and the different brothers moved into different apartments and floors in the same building. But in this age of nuclear families and rifts in relationships, the Bhanages are indeed a family that stays and prays together as they keep teeming up and meeting for each of the festivities and little joys the family celebrates. The whole family also extends its support to PAWS by housing injured animals received from volunteers in their premises when Nilesh is not around.

*Manasi and Dishita:

In the world of animal welfare that I had seen thus far, many people are not married and even if they are, their marital lives are far from being ‘ideal’, but by God’s blessings, Nilesh and his wife Manasi are a ‘super couple’, devoted to the cause of animals and their welfare.

Manasi and Nilesh Bhanage

Before meeting Manasi, I had always imagined that Nilesh would have met Manasi while rescuing an animal somewhere or the other, but to my surprise that was not the case. Nilesh shared that his meeting Manasi was purely ‘divine intervention’ as they met in a Tourist Bus in 2006 when Nilesh was travelling with his friends on a short pilgrimage trip to Sai Baba of Shirdi. Manasi was in the same bus taking her grandmother to the holy place. Manasi was not an animal lover or animal welfare person to begin with, she was an HR Management Professional working in a Mumbai based company; but as Manasi shared, “I always knew rescuing animals was a way of life for Nilesh. Even in our courtship period, I was truly amazed by all that he had accomplished and aimed to do at such a young age for animals and PAWS uptil then”.

But Manasi’s life was to change as well, when she started accompanying the PAWS ambulance on its daily rescue calls following the birth of their daughter Dishita which had prompted Manasi to leave her regular job as well. As Manasi saw the suffering of animals on the street and the tender affection and commitment with which Nilesh and the PAWS team nursed them back to fitness, Manasi was gradually inspired to do her bit, she and she surely has done more than her bit and her efforts are only growing by the day in aiding Nilesh in all his efforts with PAWS.

Manasi and Nilesh complement each other’s skills tremendously in life and also while working for PAWS. While on one hand, Manasi’s strong interpersonal skills help her organise and arrange for funding to sustain PAWS activities, her HR skills also help calm down (and retain) the staff and volunteers who may sometimes feel overwhelmed by Nilesh’ strong and tireless work ethics and his methodical attention to details, on the other hand, Nilesh’s vast experience in animal welfare and his global network coupled with his diligence, determination and professionalism have helped ensure that PAWS has continued to remain the lifeline for the animals living in the suburbs of Mumbai.

And expectedly so Nilesh and Manasi’s two year old daughter is following in her parents footsteps, she is not afraid of animals and keenly observes her father rescuing and treating all animals, be it birds, dogs, cats or even snakes! Manasi’s companion these days are their pet cats Bitty and Kitty. Kitty who happens to be adopted and blind is about an year old and Nilesh adopted her the moment he first received an SOS adoption message about her many months back, Kitty has learnt to find her way in the house, the PAWS office and the accompanyiong staircase. She is extremely lovable, gorges on her favourite catfood ‘Drools’, is potty-trained and now also sterilized and Kitty with Dishita are surely, by the way it seemed, are both adorable darling apples of Manasi’s eyes too!

Dishita Bhanage: 'Start them young'

Nilesh's pet cats, Kitty (Blind and back & white) and Bitty (the white one)

Nilesh’s 16 year old pet dog Raju, who passed away in December 2010, was Dishita’s first introduction to animals, she used to even sit on his back and take rides on him and Raju patiently let her do all of it as Manasi watched in awe! Raju was a special dog in Nilesh’s life too; his photo now adorns a prime place in the walls of the living room of Nilesh’s house. “Raju has seen both me and PAWS grow, he was 3 years old when I started working for animals in 1998 and had been with me and PAWS for 13 years thereafter. He has been with me and my family through everything and we all miss him and his presence in our lives and the void will remain so always.”…Nilesh also shared that in his younger days, Raju used to walk till the local railway station to drop off his parents as they left for their work in Mumbai early morning and then used to return back home on his own without getting into a fight with any of the dogs along the way!

The journey ahead….

PAWS formally got access to a Rescue Centre of its own last year thanks to the generosity of Mrs. Maneka Gandhi of People for Animals which operated this premises in 1994-95 and the place was lying unused ever since. This rescue centre is located at Murbad, about 50 kms away from Dombivili .

With this PAWS Rescue Centre at Murbad nearing completion and renovation, Nilesh aims to generate more funding resources to make the Rescue Centre sustainable. Like us at Jaagruti, Nilesh agrees that Rescue centres should only be aimed at treating animals to fitness and then releasing them back in their natural surroundings or where they were picked up from. “Only those animals who are so badly handicapped that they can’t fend for themselves should be housed at a shelter for life”. Says Nilesh and we at Jaagruti second that, for if animal shelters keep on housing and feeding healthy animals then according to us at Jaagruti also this habit of ‘hoarding and collecting healthy animals at shelters’ robs an injured animal in need of much needed space and the resources spent on feeding and fattening healthy animals at shelters can be best spent on treating many an injured animal.

“My aim now is to start an Animal Birth Control Unit and a full-fledged veterinary hospital at the PAWS Centre in Murbad. It will be a long drawn process but I am sure we will be able to do so”, shares Nilesh. Nilesh’s immediate goal is to recruit honest staff to support housekeeping and medical needs of animals at Murbad and generating resources for the same is something Manasi plans to take on with gutso as she plans a non-profit event management company of her own, that could help PAWS to generate funds for its operations through event-based awareness and fund-raising activities.

We at Jaagruti wish them and the team at PAWS the very best in all their efforts and promise hereby to continue to support them in whatever way we possibly can.

We also express our deep gratitude to Nilesh and Manasi for making these three days of mine spent with them one of the most enriching learning experiences of my life, which will for sure continue to inspire us all at Jaagruti in our efforts as we aim to expand our reach and efforts from a modest beginning thus far. A big thank you!

If you want to learn more about the work PAWS does and help support Nilesh and his team in their efforts, please click on www.pawsasia.org.

If any one of you reading this can draw any lessons and inspiration from this article penned by us, this whole effort of ours at Jaagruti will further strengthen our objective of informing, sharing and inspiring as many people as we can about animals, the people who work for them and make this place a kinder and a better place to live in!

–        Vasudha Mehta (vasudha@jaagruti.org)

Animal Abuse-from F.I.R to Jail

We at Jaagruti had attended the ‘India for Animals’ 2011 conference held at Chennai from 29-31 January 2011, with the objective of sharing our learnings from the conference with the readers of this website as well as the many people who keep searching the internet for information on such topics and often end up being disappointed with the paucity of easily understandable information available online on subjects of animal welfare and laws for the common man who cares for animals on the street and empathizes with the suffering of animals. The information presented below will be useful for reporting cases and lodging F.I.Rs with police on issues other than animal abuse as well.

Mr. Ajay Marathe, an RTI Activist from Mumbai shares this important brochure titled, “First Information Report (F.I.R) and YOU’ prepared by the Commonwealth Human Rights initiative which provides answers to all the questions related to F.I.R’s that may cross our mind often. You can download this brochure by clicking here.

Below is a handout shared by Ms. Anjali Sharma (Advocate, Legal advisor and board member, Animal Welfare Board of India) and Inspector Ajaib Singh of Punjab Police in the workshop they had held on Day 2 of this conference titled, “Animal Abuse-F.I.R se Jail tak

WHAT IS AN FIR, AND WHO CAN LODGE AN FIR?

First Information Repot (FIR) is a written document prepared by the police when they receive information about the commission of cognizable offence.  It is generally a complaint lodged with the police by the victim of a cognizable offence, or by someone on his/her behalf.  Any one who knows about the commission of a cognizable offence, including a police officer who comes to know about the same, can lodge an FIR.

WHAT IS A COGNIZABLE OFFENCE?

A cognizable offence is one for which the police are authorized to start investigation on their own, and do not require any order from the court to do so. They are authorized to arrest without warrant.

WHAT IS A NON-COGNIZABLE OFFENCE?

A non-cognizable offence is an offence in which a police officer has no authority to arrest without warrant.  The police cannot investigate such an offence without the court’s permission.

THE POLICE MAY NOT INVESTIGATE A COMPLAINT AND REGISTER FIR IF:-

(i)              The case, in the opinion of the officer in charge of a police station, is not of serious nature;

(ii)            The police feel that there is not enough ground to investigate.

However, the police must record reasons for not conducting an investigation, and in the latter case, must also inform the complainant.

HOW SHOULD YOU GO ABOUT LODGING AN FIR?

i)                Inform the officer in charge of the concerned police station, either orally, or in writing, regarding the commission of the offence ;

ii)              When information about the commission of a cognizable offence is given orally, the police must write it down ;

iii)            It is your right as the person giving information regarding the commission of an offence to demand that the information recorded by the police be read over to you.

iv)             You should sign the report only after verifying that the information recorded by the police is as per the details given by you.

v)               Always ask for a copy of the FIR, since it your right to get it free of cost.

WHAT SHOULD YOU MENTION IN YOUR COMPLAINT THAT YOU WANT REGISTERED AS AN FIR?

  • Your name and address;
  • Date, and time and the location at which the incident that you wish to report about, occurred;
  • An accurate description of the incident that you wish to report;
  • Names and descriptions of the persons involved in the incident.

WHAT CAN YOU DO IF YOUR FIR IS NOT REGISTERED?

  • You can meet the Superintendent of Police or other higher officers like Deputy Inspector General of Police or Inspector General of Police, and bring your complaint to their notice.
  • You can send your complaint in writing and by post to the Superintendent of Police concerned.  If the Superintendent of Police is satisfied with your complaint, he shall either investigate the case himself or order an investigation to be made.
  • You can file a private complaint before the court having jurisdiction.

——–             ——–             ——–             ——–

THE POLICE ACT, 1861

An Act for the Regulation of Police

Preamble: – WHEREAS it is expedient to re-organise the police and to make it a more efficient instrument for the prevention and detection of crime; It is enacted as follows: –

——–

34. Punishment for certain offences on roads, etc:- Powers of police officers.-

Any person who, on any road or in any 2[open place or] street or thoroughfare within the limits of any town to which this section shall be specially extended by the State-Government, commits any of the following offences, to the obstruction, inconvenience, annoyance, risk, danger of damage of the 3[ residents or passengers] shall, on conviction before a Magistrate, be liable to a fine not exceeding fifty rupees, or to imprisonment 4[with or without hard labour] not exceeding eight days; and it shall be lawful for any police officer to take into custody; without a warrant, any person who, within his view, commitsany of such offences namely :-

First-Slaughtering cattle, Curious riding, etc:- Any person who slaughters any cattle or cleans any carcass; any person who rides or drives any cattle recklessly or furiously, or trains or breaks any horse or other cattle;

Second-Cruelty to animal:- Any person who wantonly or cruelly beats, abuses or tortures any animal; .

——–             ——–             ——–             ——–             ——–             ——–

THE DELHI POLICE ACT, 1978

An Act to amend and consolidate the law relating to the regulation of the police in the Union territory of Delhi.

It is to be noted that the Delhi Police act has a special chapter, i.e Chapter 9 devoted to empowering officials of Delhi Police with special powers over and above those mentioned in the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act 1960 to enforce this act further

——–

CHAPTER IX (DELHI POLICE ACT): Special Powers under the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act, 1960

73. Powers with regard to offences under Act 59 or 1960. (1) When in respect of an animal an offence punishable under sub-section (1) of Sec. 11 or Sec. 12 of the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act, 1960 has been committed, when there is a reasonable ground for suspecting that such offence has been committed, a police officer may-

(a) take the animal to the Metropolitan Magistrate, or

(b) if the accused person so requires, take the animal to a veterinary officer specified by general or special order by the Administrator in this behalf:

Provided that the police officer may, instead of taking the animal to a veterinary officer, take the animal for detention in a dispensary, or in any suitable place approved by the Administrator by general or special order and the animal shall thereupon be detained there until its production before a Metropolitan Magistrate, or

(c) take the animal to an infirmary appointed under Sec. 35 of the said Act for treatment and detention thereto, pending direction of a Magistrate under sub-section (2) of that section, or

(d) when the animal is in such physical condition that it cannot be taken to a veterinary officer or a Metropolitan Magistrate, draw up a report of the condition of the animal in the presence of two or more respectable persons describing such wound, sores, fractures, bruises, or other marks of injury as may be found on the body of the animal:

Provided that the police officer may take the animal for detention in a dispensary or any suitable place approved by the Administrator by general or special order and the animal shall thereupon be detained there until its produce before a Metropolitan Magistrate.

(2) Where an animal is detained in a dispensary, infirmary or other place under sub-section (1), the animal shall be produced before a Metropolitan magistrate with the least possible delay and in any case within a period not exceeding three days from the date on which it was so detained.

——–

77. Power of police officer to unsaddle animal or to unload it. When a police officer in good faith suspects that any animal being employed, in any work or labour is, by reason of any sore, unfit to be so employed, he may require the  person  in  charge  of  such  animal  to

unsaddle or unload it for the purpose of ascertaining whether any sore exists and. if any person refuses to do so, such police officer may himself unsaddle or unload the animal or may cause the same to be unsaddled or unloaded.

78. Arrest without warrant in case of certain offences under Act 59 of 1960. Any police officer may arrest, without a warrant from a Magistrate, any person committing in his presence any offence punishable under clauses (a) to (m) (both inclusive) of sub-section (1) of Sec. 11 of the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act, 1960.

MADRAS CITY POLICE ACT, 1888

An Act to regulate the Police of the City of Madras.

——–

Section 24 – Police Officers and Agent of the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals may arrest without warrant in view of offence

(1) Notwithstanding anything contained in this Act or any other Law for the time being in force :-

(a) any offence made punishable by Sections 45, 46, 49-A, 72 or 75 shall be cognizable.

(b) any Police Officer may arrest without a warrant any person committing in his view any offence made punishable by this Act.

(2) Any agent of the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals who is specially empowered by the State Government in that behalf may arrest without a warrant any person committing in his view any offence punishable under Section 53.

(3) The agent shall have power to release any person so arrested on his executing a bond with or without sureties, for his appearance before a Magistrate if and when required.

——–

Section 53 – Penalty for cruelty to animals

Whoever cruelly beats, ill-treats or tortures any animal, or causes any animal to be cruelly beaten, ill-treated or tortured, shall be liable on conviction to fine not exceeding one hundred rupees or to imprisonment, not exceeding three months, or to both.

——–             ——–             ——–             ——–             ——–             ——–

 

THE INDIAN PENAL CODE, 1860

——–

Mischief by killing or maiming animal of the value of ten rupees.

428. Mischief by killing or maiming animal of the value of ten rupees.-Whoever commits mischief by killing, poisoning, maiming or rendering useless any animals or animal of the value of the ten rupees or upwards, shall be punished with imprisonment of either description for a term which may extend to two years, or with fine, or with both.

Classification of Offence:- The offence under this section is cognizable, bailable, compoundable and triable by any Magistrate.

Mischief by killing or maiming cattle, etc., of any value or any animal of the value of fifty rupees.

429. Mischief by killing or maiming cattle, etc., of any value or any animal of the value of fifty rupees.–Whoever commits mischief by killing, poisoning, maiming or rendering useless, any elephant, camel, horse, mule, buffalo, bull, cow or ox, whatever may be the value thereof, of any other animal of the value of fifty rupees or upwards, shall be punished with imprisonment or either description for a term which may extend to five years, or with fine, or with both.

Classification of Offence:- The offence under this section is cognizable, bailable, compoundable and triable by Magistrate of the first class.

——–

Negligent conduct with respect to poisonous substance.

284. Negligent conduct with respect to poisonous substance.–

Whoever does, with any poisonous substance, any act in a manner so rash or negligent as to endanger human life, or to be likely to cause hurt or injury to any person, or knowingly or negligently omits to take such order with any poisonous substance in his possession as is sufficient to guard against probable danger to human life from such poisonous substance, shall be punished with imprisonment of either description for a term which may extend to six months, or with fine which may extend to one thousand rupees, or with both.

Classification of Offence:- The offence under this section is cognizable, bailable, triable by any Magistrate, and non-compoundable.

——–             ——–             ——–             ——–             ——–             ——–

THE PREVENTION OF CRUELTY TO ANIMALS ACT, 1960

Section 11. Treating animals cruelly : (1) If any person

(a) beats, kicks, over-rides, over-drives, over-loads, tortures or otherwise treats any animal so as to subject it to unnecessary pain or suffering or causes, or being the owner permits, any animal to be so treated; or

(b) 13(employs in any work or labour or for any purpose any animal which, by reason of its age or any disease) infirmity; wound, sore or other cause, is unfit to be so employed or, being the owner, permits any such unfit animal to be employed; or

(c) wilfully and unreasonably administers any injurious drug or injurious substance to 14(any animal) or wilfully and unreasonably causes or attempts tocause any such drug or substance to be taken by 15(any animal;) or

(d) conveys or carries, whether in or upon any vehicle or not, any animal in such a manner or position as to subject it to unnecessary pain or suffering; or

(e) keeps or confines any animal in any -cage or other receptacle which does not measure sufficiently in height, length and breadth to permit the animal a reasonable opportunity for movement; or

(f) keeps for an unreasonable time any animal chained or tethered upon an unreasonably short or unreasonably heavy chain or cord; or

(g) being the owner, neglects to exercise or cause to be exercised reasonably any dog habitually chained up or kept in close confinement; or

(h) being the owner of (any animal) fails to provide such animal with sufficient food, drink or shelter; or

(i) without reasonable cause, abandons any animal in circumstances which tender it likely that it will suffer pain by reason of starvation thirst; or

(j) wilfully permits any animal, of which he is the owner, to go at large in any street, while the animal is affected with contagious or infectious disease or, without reasonable excuse permits any diseased or disabled animal, of which he is the owner, to die in any street; or

(k) offers for sale or without reasonable cause, has in his possession any animal which is suffering pain by reason of mutilation, starvation, thirst, overcrowding or other illtreatment; or

(1) mutilates any animal or kills any animal (including stray dogs) by using the method of strychnine injections, in the heart or in any other unnecessarily cruel manner or;

(m) solely with a view to providing entertainment

(i) confines or causes to be confined any animal (including tying of an animal as a bait in a tiger or other sanctuary) so as to make it an object or prey for any other animal; or

(n) organises, keeps uses or acts in the management or, any place for animal fighting or for the purpose of baiting any animal or permits or offers any place to be so used or receives money for the admission of any other person to any place kept or used for any such purposes; or

(o) promotes or takes part in any shooting match or competition wherein animals are released from captivity for the purpose of such shooting:

he shall be punishable 19(in the case of a first offence, with fine which shall not be less than ten rupees but which may extend to fifty rupees and in the case of a second or subsequent offence committed within three years of the previous offence, with fine which shall not be less than twenty-five rupees but which may extend, to one hundred rupees or with imprisonment for a term which may extend, to three months, or with both.

(2) For the purposes of section (1) an owner shall be deemed to have committed an offence if he has failed to exercise reasonable care and supervision with a view to the prevention of such offence;

Provided that where an owner is convicted permitting cruelty by reason only of having failed to exercise such care and supervision, he shall not be liable to imprisonment without the option of a fine.

(3) Nothing in this section shall apply to –

(a) the dehorning of cattle, or the castration or branding or nose roping of any animal in the prescribed manner, or

(b) the destruction of stray dogs in lethal chambers by such other methods as may be prescribed, or (Note from ‘Jaagruti’: nothing is prescribed on this front under any laws or directives, humane sterilization of dogs is the only method advocated to control dog population and euthanasia can be administered to terminally ill and incurable animals only)

(c) the extermination or destruction of any animal under the authority of any law for the time being in force; or

(d) any matter dealt with in Chapter IV; or

(e) the commission or omission of any act in the course of the destruction or the preparation for destruction of any animal as food for mankind unless such destruction or preparation was accompanied by the infliction of unnecessary pain or suffering.

12. Penalty for practising phooka or doom dev : If any persons upon any cow or other milch animal the operation called practising phooka or doom dev or any other operation (including injection of any or doom dev. substance) to improve lactation which is injurious to the health of the animal or permits such operation being performed upon any such animal in his possession or under his control, he shall be punishable with fine which may extend to one thousand rupees, or with imprisonment for a term which may extend to two years, or with both, and the animal on which the operation was performed shall be forfeited to the Government.

——–

28. Saving as respects manner of killing prescribed by religion : Nothing contained in this Act shall render it an offence to kill any animal in a manner required by the religion of any community.

——–

38. Power to make rules.

——–

(3) If any person contravenes, or abets the contravention of, any rules made under this section, he shall be punishable with fine which may extend to one hundred rupees, or with imprisonment for a term which may extend to three months, or with both.

 

——–             ——–             ——–             ——–             ——–             ——–

TRANSPORT OF ANIMALS, RULES, 1978

In exercise of the powers conferred by clause (h) of sub-section (2) of Section 38 of the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act, 1960 (59 of 1960); the Central Government hereby makes the following rules, the same having been previously published as required by the said Section, namely :

——–

 

2. Definitions : In these rules, unless the context otherwise requires–

(a)       qualified veterinary surgeon means one who holds a diploma or a degree of a recognized veterinary college.

——–

96. Issue of certificate before transportation

(1) A valid certificate issued by an officer or any person or Animal Welfare Organisation duly recognised and authorised for this purpose by the Animal Welfare Board of India or the Central Government shall be procured by any person making transport of any animal before transportation of such animal verifying that all the relevant Central and State Acts, rules and orders pertaining to the said animals including the rules relating to transport of such animals have been duly complied with and that the animal is not being transported for any purpose contrary to the provision of any law.

(2) In the absence of such certificate, the carrier shall refuse to accept the consignment for transport.

97. Cancellation of permit or authorisation for transport

(1) In the event of contravention or non compliance of any of the rules contained in these rule for transport of animals, if it is pointed out in writing by any officer or persons or Animal Welfare Organisations authorised for this purpose by the Animal Welfare Board of India or the Central Government, then, any permit or authorisation issued for such transport shall be immediately cancelled by the concerned authority and it shall be the duty of the police to stop the further transport even from the intermediary station and proceed against the said offenders and deal with the animals in accordance with law.

(2) The custody of the animals immediately after unloading from the rail wagons, truck or any other vehicle shall be given to the authorised Animal Welfare Organisation if available, till the competent authority or the magistrate having jurisdiction decides about their care and upkeep.

98. General conditions of transport

(1) Animals to be transported shall be healthy and in good condition and such animals shall be examined by a veterinary doctor for freedom from infectious diseases and their fitness to undertake the journey; provided that the nature and duration of the proposed journey shall be taken into account while deciding upon the degree of fitness.

(2) An animal which is unfit for transport shall not be transported and the animals who are new born, diseased, blind emaciated, lame, fatigued or having given birth during the preceding seventy two hours or likely to give birth during transport shall not be transported.

(3) Pregnant and very young animals shall not be mixed with other animals during transport.

(4) Different classes of animals shall be kept separately during transport.

(5) Diseased animals, whenever transported for treatment, shall not be mixed with other animals

(6) Troublesome animals shall be given tranquilisers before loading during transport.

(7) Animals shall be transported in their on-farm social groups (established atleast one week prior to journey).

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More articles on this subject and Animal laws of India can be accessed under the following category of posts on Jaagruti


Basic life saving steps for injured/ill pigeons or any bird

Courtesy: The wonderful angel that she is, Cindy Boyce from Pigeon Angels:http://www.pigeonangels.com/

It is vital to stabilize an ill or injured pigeon or dove as soon as possible after rescue.

Three basic steps should be followed.

HEATISOLATIONHYDRATION

HEAT:

A bird must be warmed gradually to a normal body temperature and be responsive (able to swallow). It is not unusual for a baby bird presented for rehabilitation to be very cold. (If a bird is unresponsive, please seek the assistance of an experienced rehabber or avian vet immediately.)

If head trauma is suspected, do not place them on heat.

Give the bird a quick, superficial examination. Unless there is a critical situation, e.g., (severe bleeding) all birds should be covered and placed on a heat source* (see below) for at least 20-30 minutes to bring the body temperature back to normal.

ISOLATION:

Allow the bird to stabilize in a quite, dark, warm area.

While the bird is warming, take the opportunity to prepare any other items you may need to care for the bird, e.g., International Rehydrating Solution (recipe noted below)

A ‘COLD’ BIRD SHOULD NEVER BE GIVEN FLUID OR FOOD, PERIOD!!

HYDRATION:

Fluids should be given after, and ONLY AFTER, the bird has been warmed, examined for any injuries & a determination is made as to the severity of his dehydration.

All fluids should be warmed or at room temperature!

Description and degrees, of hydrated and dehydrated birds

A well hydrated bird will be very alert, have elastic skin, bright eyes, moist, plump membrane inside the mouth and well formed moist droppings.

A moderately dehydrated bird will be less than fully alert, have dry, flaky skin, dull eyes, non-formed droppings and have a sticky membrane in the mouth.

A severely dehydrated bird will be lethargic or unconscious, the skin will ‘tent’ when slightly pinched, have sunken eyes, dry or absent droppings and have dry membrane in the mouth.

Depending on the cause and degree of dehydration, reversing this condition can take up to 24 hours. If the bird is alert, he may be rehydrated using an eye dropper and putting drops along his beak every few minutes, making sure the fluids are room temperature or warmed slightly. BE CAREFUL SO AS TO NOT LET THE WATER ENTER HIS NOSTRILS. Initially, a rehydrating solution should be administered. Plain water should not be given unless nothing else is available.

Please follow these simple, basic, yet most important steps.

The cells of the body simply don’t work properly when dehydrated. Absolutely no digestive processes can take place if the gut CAN’T work. Absorption will not take place, food sits in the gut, undigested, and will eventually kill the bird.

* Heat source suggestions:

Towel lined heating pad, set on low

Towel lined hot water bottle

Low wattage lamp, directing the light into the cage.

* Emergency heat source substitute:

Fill an old sock about 2/3 full of rice. Microwave the sock for a few seconds. Making sure it isn’t too hot, place it around the bird.

* International Rehydrating Solution:

To a cup of warm water add a pinch of salt & sugar, mix well. Use this solution to rehydrate by mouth.

* Emergency rehydrating substitute:

Pedialyte, unflavored.

By following these basic steps you have done your best to stabilize your little feathered patient until further assistance is available.

 

Kite flying…and birds dying: Understanding the connect + bird helplines in Mumbai, Baroda and Delhi

Credits: This article has been posted here thanks to the information circulated by Charu Shah through the Facebook Group ‘Awareness on  Kite Flying’, Neha Patel (from Baroda, Gujarat), Nilesh Bhanage (from PAWS Mumbai), Fauna Police (at Delhi) , Wildlife Rescue (at Delhi)

Every year, the festival of Makar Sankranti (falling this year on 14th January 2011) is celebrated with a lot of joy and cheer, but hardly few people know that this joy causes death to many innocent birds.

People use manja/kite string made of glass, so that the kites they fly don’t get cut easily and fly higher, but what they don’t realise is that the same threads responsible for killing a lot of birds every year while crippling others for life.
This glass manja (glass powder treated string or also called Chinese string/manja)gets entangled in the trees and cause death not only on that particular day, but for months after that.
The legs or wings of the birds that sit on those trees, have nests therein or fly past its branches get entangled in this manja, and stay there, sometimes hanging upside down for days …on end, bleeding, and dying a slow miserable death.The most common bird to fall prey to kite flying in the city of Delhi is ironically a raptor bird, known as Kite (to learn more about this, read this article till the end). 

Apart from regular birds like sparrows, pigeons, crows, some exotic birds, who have migrated from far off places across the world, also get entangled in the web of glass manjas and loose their lives.

Not to mention here that many humans also get their throats and fingers slit because of these manjas hanging lose all over the place.
So if possible, please celebrate the festival spreading cheer and not death! 

(Design Courtesy: Fauna POLICE)

Attached below are come contact numbers for bird rescue in Mumbai (Maharashtra) and Baroda (Gujarat).

All these numbers have been verified by Ahimsa in malad and by Charu Shah, so please forward this piece of information to all your contacts, and please try to save a life this year!

Please note that some of these people listed below may not have an ambulance service to come and take the injured bird, but YOU CAN (and should) definitely take an injured bird you spot to either of these people and request them to administer it medical treatment and take care of the bird until it is fit to fly again.

For injured birds in MUMBAI, please contact
•Mr Jain (Borivali- takes care of injured birds,no pick up)- 28063705
Hiren Shah (Malad)- 9820271492
Ahimsa (Kandivali)- 288804195/ 9833962399
•D.K. (Malad/ Kandivali East)- 9820948506
•Jayesh (Malad/ Kandivali West)- 9702440194
•Rajesh Doshi (Goregaon/ Jogeshwari)- 9892465888
•Karuna (Parle)- 65151313/ 65141313/ 9819100100
•Manish Vora (Parle East)- 9819142001
•Nimit Vora (Parle East)- 9819133735
•Vimal Shah (Parle East)- 9821303057
•Sureshbhai (Parle West)- 26127035
•Sunil Shah (Santacruz/ Parle/ Andheri East)- 9821588894
•SPCA (Parel)- 24137518/ 24133598/ 24135285
•Manav Mandir (Worli Naka to Colaba)- 23080319
•WSD (Cuffe Parade to Mahim/ Sion)- 64222838
•Vardhaman Sanskar Dham (Ghatkopar/ Powai/ Vashi)- 65252573
•PAWS (Dombivali)- 25820571/ 9820161114/ 9869376238
•Thane SPCA (Thane)- 9322271966/ 32612344
•IDA (Deonar)- 32681418/ 9320056581
(Vashi)- 32681419 /9320056585
•Fire brigade- 101

More bird helpline numbers shared by Nilesh  Bhanage from PAWS
PAWS Helpline – 9820161114 / 9920777536
Thane – Avinash Bhagat – 9892061899
Dombivli – Nilesh Bhanage – 9820161114
Kalyan – Samir Nevgi – 9930232710
Ulhasnagar – Neetu John – 8080208363

Bird Helpline Numbers in Vadodara (Gujarat) : 9377666964 , 9898693659 , 9925058137 , 9904716996

Why do so many Raptors get injured in Delhi because of kite strings?

 

Poster Courtesy: PAWS

 

 

 Delhi is one of the largest  producers of meat, as a result of which large amount of meat scrap gets dumped across various corners of the city in illegal slaughterhouses spread across the city. The extinction of Vultures acted as a boon for Black kites (Milvus migrans) and gradually, there was a rapid rise seen in the population of Black Kites.

In India, people love to fly paper kites with the help of sharp glass coated strings/Glass Manja. This string acts like a ‘naked sword’ in sky and generally cuts everything  which comes in its way whether it’s a bird or any human being. There have been many cases in which this ‘Manja’ has killed many human beings with fatal wounds on their throat.


We request you to kindly consider giving up kite flying or if you still love flying kites, fly them using a coton string, referred to as ‘saddi’  in Hindi .

For the glass string that gets tied on poles, tree branches also acts as an inevitable injury and death trap for birds of all species as they get entangled in them.

Once caught in these glass manjas, these birds are find it extremely difficult to break free and in the effort that they make to free themselves from these mesh of strings, they end up damaging their wings and other body parts, like damaging their toes.

If ever you spot an injured bird of prey like Kites, Eagles or any other non-vegetarian birds, please dial the following Helpline Numbers in Delhi – 9810029698, 9810129698,

—For all other kind of birds, like Crows, Pigeons, Owls etc.,contact : 9810639698, 986855222, 9212111116

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