Posted in Against Animal Cruelty, Against Pet Abandonment, Animal Laws of India, Animals, Articles, Awareness Posters for Animal/Bird Welfare, Be the Change, Information that empowers!, News Reports, Take Action!

Veterinary services must go on, animals can’t and shouldn’t suffer during COVID-19, PM Modi & Central Govt tells states

Please carry printouts of the PM’s advisory to the States about street animal welfare, and the letter from the Ministry of Fisheries, Animal Husbandry and Dairying, Upamanyu Basu, to show the authorities if they stop you from feeding.

Please also keep an eye out for animals that may be suffering inside closed pet shops and inform the authorities immediately.

Sharing the same below for ready reference:

News Article in ‘The Print’ dated 23rd March by Journalist Sanya Dhingra (Please scroll below for relevant images, that you can download, print and keep handy, while you feed/look after animals in need and street animals in general. This is the time to show humanity, kindness and compassion to all living beings)

The Narendra Modi government has told all states to ensure that medical help for animals is treated as an essential service, which does not get suspended during COVID-19 lockdowns across the country.

While several states announced lockdowns Sunday in a bid to arrest the spread of the deadly disease in India, they did not include veterinary services in the list of essential services that would be exempt under it.

In a letter addressed to all chief secretaries dated 23rd March, the Centre said, “It is requested that veterinary hospitals and dispensaries in the state, including private veterinary clinics, veterinary pathologies, animal shelters etc. function in the normal course and the veterinary services be considered in the list of ‘Essential Services’.”

The letter, written by the joint secretary of the Ministry of Fisheries, Animal Husbandry and Dairying, Upamanyu Basu said, “It is necessary to ensure continuous emergency services in the animal husbandry and veterinary sector, especially in emergent animal health issues situations.

“These May include but are not restricted to, emergency services like disease diagnosis and treatment, monitoring of any emergency livestock and poultry diseases, immediate disease reporting, etc.”

However, the government has urged veterinarians and other related officials to ensure strict personal hygiene and avoid public gatherings.

Animals and birds should not suffer during lockdown’

On the same day, the Animal Welfare Board of India (AWBI) wrote another letter to all states emphasising that all law enforcement agencies ensure that animals and birds do not suffer due to hunger during the lockdown due to COVID-19.

Please carry printouts of the PM’s advisory to the States about street animal welfare, and the letter from the Ministry of Fisheries, Animal Husbandry and Dairying, Upamanyu Basu, to show the authorities if they stop you from feeding. Please also keep an eye out for animals that may be suffering inside closed pet shops and inform the authorities immediately.

“This is a valuable service consistently provided by compassionate individuals and the absence of it may cause a large number of animals and birds to suffer and die and carcasses of the dead animals and birds may further spread different diseases amongst community which will be difficult to control,” Dr O.P. Chaudhary, Director of the AWBI has written.

Meanwhile Delhi Government has issued the following order as well.

“The situation is quite alarming,” BJP MP Maneka Gandhi said. “In some places, food is being stopped…No animal grains and chara is being allowed to come to Haryana from UP. Even pedigree from Hyderabad is being stopped by Mumbai,” she said.

“Animals and birds cannot be allowed to starve in the country in this manner.”

Posted in Against Animal Cruelty, Animal Birth Control (ABC) Programme/Street Dog Sterilization, Animal Laws of India, Be the Change, Do-it-Yourself (DIY) Series, Games people play, Information that empowers!, Street Dogs of India, Take Action!

To all those of you who are being harassed by their neighbourhood for tending to animals….

Please remember that for the animals, if not for yourself, you need to be strong and fight this out.

While you can approach local animal welfare organisations or animal activists, but in the end, it is a fight you will have to fight on your own, for yourself and the animals you care for…

  • If talking to people and explaining them the below mentioned laws and constitutional provisions doesn’t help, then, whether you like it or you don’t, you need to approach the Police and file an F.I.R or Police Complaint against all the people who are harassing you, abusing you, threatening to kill/harm you/your property and the dogs/other animals you care for.
  • Be sure to mention full names and addresses of all the people who are harassing you and give complete true account of the matter, without exaggerating facts – take help of the points stated below to put your grievances and facts across and mention why you are seeking help from the Police and reporting this matter.
  • There is no law that prohibits feeding of street animals, and citizens who choose to do so are in fact performing a duty cast upon them by the Constitution of India. Persons, who are trying to interfere with their effort, or display aggression, can be held liable for having committed the offense described in the Indian Penal Code and criminal intimidation.
  • Moreover, as per Indian law, street dogs cannot be beaten or driven away. They can merely be sterilized in the manner envisaged in the Animal Birth Control (Dogs) Rules, 2001(Rules under Indian Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act (PCA), 1960), vaccinated, and then returned back to their original locations.
  • If your municipality is not doing the same, you can file a Police Complaint or FIR against the local Municipal Corporation for flouting the laws and rules mentioned above, which need to be complied with throughout the country, as PCA Act is a Central Act, i.e. it is applicable across the country and the local Police has been mandated with the responsibility of enforcing this act and reporting/booking violations/offenders.

Constitutional provisions:

  • Article 51A of the Constitutional Law of India, speaks about the duties of every citizen of India. One of these duties includes having compassion for living creatures (Article 51 A (g) of the Indian Constitution). Those who look after animals and other creatures of God are thus protected under the Constitution.

 

  • Article 19 of the Constitution of India, deals with right to freedom and in this freedom are included the right to profession, occupation, trade and business. Therefore, it means that every citizen has the right to occupation and if someone has taken the caring of animals as his occupation, it is legal and he has every right to carry on with his occupation.

Legal provisions:

In a Judgment passed by the Delhi Court, it has been stated that the Animal Welfare Board of India and the Municipal Authorities have in the guidelines issued by them specified the problem often faced by individuals and families who adopt and feed stray animals. The court says that it is necessary to bring into record that these individuals and families who adopt stray animals are doing a great service to humanity as they are acting in the aid and assistance of Municipal Authorities by providing these animals with food and shelter and also by getting them vaccinated and sterilized. Without assistance of such persons no local Municipal Authority can successfully carry out its ABC programme. The Court has proceeded to say that the local police and the municipal authorities are under obligation not only to encourage such adoption but also to ensure protection to such persons who come forward to take care of these animals specifically the community or neighbourhood dogs so that they are not subjected to any kind of cruelty, finally, the Court has said that every individual has the right to live his life in the manner he wants and it is necessary that the society and the community recognize it.

  • If you are a woman/girl who is being abused/harassed/threatened by neighbours/people around for being kind to animals, please also note that you can lodge F.I.Rs against these people Under Section 509 of Indian Penal Code (U/S 509 of IPC) – which is a cognizable offence.
  • Under the Govt. of India, Animal Birth Control Rules 2001 (drafted under the Indian Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act 1960), no sterilized dogs can be relocated from their area. As per five different High Court orders, sterilized dogs have to remain in their original areas. If the dog is not sterilized, the Society can simply ask an animal welfare organization to sterilize and vaccinate the dog. They cannot relocate them. Relocation is not permissible, as it would cause more problems such as an increase in dog bites as new dogs will move into the area who are unfamiliar with residents and therefore more likely to be hostile. All problems of stray animals have to be handled within the institutional framework available. No association, recognized or unrecognized, shall take recourse to any action regarding stray animals on their own, either themselves or through any person employed by them like security guards. While residents and Associations are free to address institutional agencies for redressal of grievances in this matter, no resident/association will interfere with the freedom of other residents in caring and attending animals.
  • Section 11 of The Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act, 1960 forbids the displacement of Animals from its natural environment into an environment that is hostile to it, where the animal may be injured/hurt/maimed or killed due to lack of food or fights with other animals. Also, please remember that Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act 1960 is a Central Act, i.e. it is applicable throughout the country and the powers to enforce this law have been given to the Local Police.
  • Additionally, Section 429 of the Indian Penal Code also provides for imprisonment and fine, in cases involving animal cruelty. Section 429 in The Indian Penal Code, 1860, a Central Government Act, reads as follows:

“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.”

Following are some of the self-explanatory documents that one can look up and refer to:

1. A 2 page circular issued by the Ministry of Personnel, Public Grievances, and Training, on the aspect of street animal feeding and prohibits central government employees from harassing street dogs or those feeding/looking after them.

https://jaagrutiindia.files.wordpress.com/2010/04/public-grievances-circular-pg-1.jpg

https://jaagrutiindia.files.wordpress.com/2010/04/public-grievances-circular-pg-2.jpg

2. The Animal Birth Control (Dogs) Rules, 2001.

https://jaagrutiindia.files.wordpress.com/2010/04/the-animal-birth-control-dogs-rules-2001.pdf

3. A directive issued by the Animal Welfare Board of India, constituted by the Ministry of Environment and Forests- provides immunity to animal feeders and restricts RWAs from harassing people tending to dogs.

https://jaagrutiindia.files.wordpress.com/2010/04/awbi-direction.pdf

4. M.C.D. (Municipal Corporation of Delhi) notification, showing the approach of the M.C.D. with regard to street animals, which is based on the law of the land.

https://jaagrutiindia.files.wordpress.com/2010/04/mcd-notices-toi-march-2009.jpg

5. A Times of India news report regarding a Delhi High Court direction to the police to protect persons who feed stray dogs.

https://jaagrutiindia.files.wordpress.com/2010/04/times-of-india-article-on-feeding.pdf

6. A Hindustan Times news report regarding the view taken by the Supreme Court regarding stray dogs.

https://jaagrutiindia.files.wordpress.com/2010/04/ht-article-24th-jan-supreme-court-stays-bombay-high-court-order.jpg

7. An order passed by the Additional Chief Metropolitan Magistrate, Delhi https://jaagrutiindia.files.wordpress.com/2010/04/addln-chief-metropolitan-magistrates-order-on-street-dogs-of-india.pdf

8. A Dossier of Indian Street Dog related laws and court rulingshttps://jaagrutiindia.files.wordpress.com/2013/03/a-dossier-of-indian-street-dog-related-laws-and-court-rulings.pdf and Copies of other court judgments can be downloaded from http://www.strays.in/index.php/legal-precedence-faqs-judgements-court-cases-drafts/

9. Reporting a crime and lodging an F.I.R or Police Complaint-

https://jaagruti.org/2013/12/13/reporting-a-crime-all-about-lodging-an-f-i-r-with-the-police/

If you want awareness workshops held in your company or Institution on the subject of animal laws and welfare, for audience in any age-group, please write to us on contact@jaagruti.org

Posted in Animal Birth Control (ABC) Programme/Street Dog Sterilization, Animals, Be the Change, Do-it-Yourself (DIY)Series: Animal Rescue and Treatment, Events, Pets, Street Dogs of India, Take Action!

28th September 2013, World Rabies Day: Get the street dogs you care for vaccinated against rabies

Hi,

We wanted to share that on the occasion of World Rabies Day on 28th September 2013, we at JAAGRUTI can facilitate to get street dogs in your respective areas/locality* in Delhi vaccinated against Rabies for free.

*The only pre-requisite is that you should send us an e-mail or a scanned letter taking a guarantee** of getting atleast 10 street dogs vaccinated to contact@jaagruti.org (stating ‘Free ARV’ in the subject line).

** When we say guarantee, then that means that you should be able to confidently locate and hold the street dog and pet them till the time the paravet injects the vaccine into the dog, without any hoohaa or drama about it!

 

Also, please note that ARV shots cannot be given to pups under 90 days of age.

Also mention the following in this request e-mail you write to us:

1. Your name:

2. Your Address:

3. Number of Street dogs you would like Anti-Rabies Vaccinations (ARV) done for and their area:

4. Your contact number and e-mail ID

If you love your street dogs enough to bring them all the way to the camp ON YOUR OWN to get them vaccinated by doctors on site, then the main FREE ANTI RABIES VACCINATION camp is being organised on 28th September 2013, Saturday at:

Address: Baba Khimman Singh Park, Opposite KD Block, Ashok Vihar-Phase 1, Delhi (Near Big Transformer)

Timings of the Camp: 8AM to 3PM

You can even get your Pet Dogs, whose ARV shots are due or you have forgotten (as unfortunately most callous ignorant lazy pet owners may do..) to this camp.

Posted in Animals, Be the Change, Do you know?, Do-it-Yourself (DIY)Series: Animal Rescue and Treatment, Information that empowers!, Medical treatment of Animals, Pets, Street Dogs of India, Take Action!

Treating Dogs with Maggot infestations

On-site First Aid Treatment for Prevention and Cure of Maggot wounds in Street Animals:

It is the onset of warm weather and humid conditions that trigger an onset of maggot wound related queries on our helpline and the below treatment protocol has been shared aplenty by us through our website www.jaagruti.org, e-mail queries and blog based queries.

A horrifying number of street animals die tragic and slow painful deaths owing to maggot infestations. But, maggot wounds can be prevented and treated on site very easily (if noticed before it is too late) and these unfortunate deaths can be prevented if animal welfare volunteers read through this article below and back the knowledge so acquired with animal handling skills and some amount of patience, determination and dedication; all of which are essential qualities that are required to help heal a voiceless animal.

What are Maggots and how do they infest an animal? : 

Flies get attracted to garbage, carcasses, rotting food, open wounds and faeces and use them as substrate to lay their eggs. A particular type of fly, called screwworm flies has a special fondness to lay its eggs on fresh, untreated open wounds on any animal’s body and that is what can trigger maggot infestation. These wounds could be there on an animal’s body due to a fight they might have gotten into, itching, licking, accidental injuries etc. A wound of the size of a pinhole may be enough for a fly to get attracted and lay eggs on. In areas the animal can reach with his tongue, these fly eggs are usually licked off. Danger areas for an animal where maggot infestations are common are the ears, anywhere on the head and neck, back of the body, anus.

These eggs, once laid on the wound site of an animal can hatch within a few hours into larvae or “maggots”, which start out very small just like a thin rice grain but then start feeding into the flesh and organs of any animal (be it a calf, a cat, a tiger or a dog) and then they (maggots) grow fat and up to an inch long. Alongside, they penetrate into the animal’s body and the wound increases in surface area and deepens in no time, resulting in more flies getting attracted to that side and laying even more eggs, thereby infesting it even further with maggots.

Left untreated, maggot wounds are fatal as the animal may die due to the maggots tunnelling into their brain or vital organs (depending on the site of the wound), blood loss or secondary infections.

Where and how will you see maggots or understand that the animal is infested with maggots and requires treatment?

You won’t see maggots crawling like ticks or lice on the skin surface or hair, instead what you will see is a ‘hole’ in the body of the animal and maggots crawling their way on the wound surface or inside it eating away the flesh and the most potent indicator that an animal has a maggot wound would be that you will smell rotting flesh. This stinking smell will only get worse as the maggots multiply and penetrate through the body of the unfortunate animal.

How to prevent Maggot infestation? 

Prevention is surely better than cure, when it comes to Maggot wounds. Please try to understand that maggot wounds can be fatal/life threatening if not treated on time. Also, note that maggot infestations occur when any small wound on an animal’s body is left untreated and in most cases, that is where it all starts from and especially so in warm, hot and humid weather!

So, if you notice that your neighbourhood street dog/cat/cow/donkey has an open wound, follow the steps below to prevent that wound from becoming infested with maggots:

  1. Clean the wound site with cotton dipped in weak Tincture Iodine solution (this is stronger and works better for wound cleaning in animals). If you cannot procure weak Tincture Iodine solution, please purchase Povidone-Iodine solution (available from your neighbourhood chemist shops under brand names, Betadine, Cipladine or Wokadine etc.). This is followed by outing Nebasulf or Neosporin powder on the wound site. These powders help dry the wound and can be purchased off the local chemist shop as well.
  2. Then to prevent flies from sitting and laying eggs on this wound site, paste a layer of Himax, an ayurvedic veterinary fly/insect repellent, broad spectrum skin ointment (Manufactured by Ayurvet Ltd.) – on top of the wound. Himax ointment has a strong smell and pungent taste, which prevents the animals from licking it. As part of the On-site Street Animal First Aid service that we at JAAGRUTI™ run, we have also applied liberally on the wound site, a layer of another veterinary ointment, Lorexane (Manufactured by Virbac India) to promote wound healing and tissue regeneration and then topping that layer up with Himax ointment. When we choose to mix both ointments and apply them together, then the proportion of Lorexane ointment: Himax ointment was 5:1.
  3. For those of you who think that restraining an animal to clean their wound and apply ointments as directed in Steps 1 and 2 is difficult to execute, then you must consider investing in topical veterinary sprays like D-Mag spray (Manufactured by Intas Pharmaceuticals Ltd.) or Topicure spray (Manufactured by Natural Remedies Pvt. Ltd.), both of which help kill maggots as well as promote wound healing. Alternatively, if sprays are not available, you can invest in veterinary powders with wound healing and maggoticidal properties like Gotbac powder (Manufactured by Scientific Remedies Pvt. Ltd.) or Negasunt powder (Manufactured by Bayer) that can be directly applied on an animal/dog’s open wound.
  4. Please note:
    1. Keep repeating the above steps till the open/bleeding wounds on the animal’s body heal. It is important that we don’t take it easy on this as leaving even the tiniest bit of untreated wound would be an opening for the maggots to creep in and cause ‘destruction’!
    2. All veterinary (i.e. animal-specific) sprays, ointments and powders listed in Steps 2 and 3 above can be purchased only through a pet supplies shop or veterinarian’s clinic only and not at your neighbourhood chemist shop.
    3. Steps 1 to 3 listed above under this section are preventive in intent and will help heal an animal’s open wound and prevent flies from turning it into a horrible maggot wound.

How to treat a maggot infested wound?

Once you spot a wound-hole on the body and smell of rotting flesh in an animal, be rest assured that the smell is of maggots chewing away on the animal’s flesh. Any time wasted hereafter will only increase the maggot wound/infestation in size and prolong the animal’s suffering and pain, please ACT FAST and follow the steps below:

  1. KILLING THE MAGGOTS: The first objective should be to kill the maggots and to do that, we use the following options after restraining/muzzling the animal:
    1. Pour a capful or two of medicinal turpentine oil over the wound site. If the wound is deep seated and the only thing you see is a hole outside, then take this turpentine oil into an empty plastic syringe (without the needle) and then push the Turpentine oil into the ‘hole’. Then just let it act over the next 6-8 hours, as the medicine takes effect, you will either see the maggots popping out of the wound on the floor or large chunks of glued insects/dissolved and held together like blobs of pus coming out of the wound.
    2. However, if you can’t find Medicinal Turpentine oil at the chemist’s shop…then please remember – DO NOT PUT Painter’s Turpentine oil/kerosene oil/petrol/phenyl etc.into the maggot wound. We have noticed that, ignorant of the above fact, a lot of people residing in slums or villages and even otherwise in cities do put all of these into a maggot wound which they should NOT DO; because the sheer toxicity of phenyl, petrol and kerosene can prove fatal and burn the good tissues of the animals, especially in sensitive areas like the head, ear (these chemicals can reach the brain through these organs). So our suggestion is that in case you don’t find Medicinal Turpentine oil, invest in maggoticidal (i.e. maggot killing) veterinary sprays like D-Mag spray or Topicure spray and then place it as close to the maggot wound site and then spray it in hard 4-5 times or even more as required. Doing so will have the same effect as those described above post-application of Turpentine oil. This part of the treatment (Steps 1 a. and 1 b.) will cause pain to the animal, but for their own welfare it is necessary that you use it. Please remember, the burning sensation will pass, but if unattended, the maggots will kill the animal.
  2. REMOVING DEAD MAGGOTS: Check the wound to see if the maggots show signs of life. Even when you think you have removed all the maggots, inspect the inside of the wound thoroughly with a torch. Maggots often create tiny tunnels leading from the main wound deeper into the body of the dog. You may not see the maggots in these tunnels. One giveaway is that the bloody fluid in the hole/holes will appear to be moving, literally “breathing,” if you watch carefully for a few minutes. A common error is not waiting long enough to observe this movement. As a precaution, even when you think you have removed all the maggots, spray the inside of the wound with the D-Mag or Topicure sprays. The pungent Turpentine/eucalyptus oil smell will irritate the maggots and they will start emerging from the tunnel. Once you think they are dead and if you are brave and determined, take a sterile tweezers/forceps to remove/pluck out the dead maggots from the wound. Do remember to clean the tweezers/blunt forceps with antiseptic solutions like Spirit /Savlon/Dettol solution prior to use.
  3. CLEANING THE WOUND: Keep clean cotton wool handy and dip it in weak Tincture Iodine solution or Povidone Iodine solution to disinfect the wound site.
  4. WOUND DRESSING:
    1. Put Negasunt or Gotbac powder into and over the wound.
    2. Next step is to liberally apply Lorexane ointment and layer the wound surface or fill up the hole/wound with this. As stated earlier, in this article, Lorexane cream helps heal the damaged wound site by promoting tissue regeneration, while also keeping the flies away.
    3. The most important step at the end is to apply Himax ointment liberally over the wound site to prevent any more flies from sitting on the wound and re-infesting it further with maggots.
  5. Slowly in a few days, fresh skin will start appearing and the open and wide maggot infested wound will heal and you will be glad that your little effort and investment helped save a life for sure…as maggot infestations don’t go away or cure or heal on their own, human intervention in the ways described above are absolutely essential!
  6. Remember to keep repeating the above steps till the wound heals, with a periodicity of 12-24 hours at the start of the treatment and then every other day till the wound heals and seals itself. Treating maggot wounds requires loads of patience, they don’t heal overnight, so please keep up the good work till the animal has healed completely.

We believe following the above steps does help and over July 2014 to November 2014, as part of the On-site First Aid Service for Street Animals that we at JAAGRUTI™ run in North West Delhi, we have followed the steps detailed in this article to treat on-site (i.e. on the very streets these animals live) 24 animals with maggot infested wounds. This included 2 donkeys and 22 dogs and depending on the severity of wounds, it has taken us 2 weeks to 4 weeks to treat all animals. We have been able to do this only because people from the community, where this maggot infested animal was being treated came forward to handle the animal while our team, was administering treatment; and also ensured that the wounded animal was being fed well to help speed up their recovery. From our end, after doing topical treatment to clean and dress the maggot wound, we were also using assistance from trained veterinary professionals to inject the required dosage of antibiotics, Inj. Ivermectin and multivitamins to kill deep seated maggots, minimise infections and promote wound healing. Please consult your local veterinarian and use tablets and syrups mixed in feed to substitute for injectables.

Do let us know if the above works for you too.

Please refer to this Slideshow on Treatment of Maggot Wounds in Dogs

By Vasudha Mehta, Co-founder & Trustee, JAAGRUTI™: 

 

Posted in Against Animal Cruelty, Animal Birth Control (ABC) Programme/Street Dog Sterilization, Animal Laws of India, Animals, Articles, Be the Change, Do you know?, Do-it-Yourself (DIY)Series: Animal Rescue and Treatment, Games people play, General/Animals, Pets, Street Dogs of India, Take Action!

Pet Dogs and Street Dogs: Do’s and Dont’s

Below is an article written by Mrs. Maneka Gandhi, who is the Chairperson of an organisation called, ‘People for Animals’. We happened to receive a copy of it in our Inbox from a fellow animal rescuer and deem it wise to share it on this blog of ours, since a lot of our helpline calls and e-mails are related to this subject.

———————————————————————————————

In recent times, RWAs, Apartment Owners’ Associations, and Cooperative Group Housing Societies, having taking to imposing various restrictions on pet owning residents, such as disallowing the use of lifts, or parks, by pets, or even banning pets altogether. There is widespread resentment against these moves, because not only do they unreasonably restrict the rights of residents, they are also unlawful and against recent court rulings.

Moreover, as an RWA, or an Apartment Owners’ Association, Cooperative Group Housing Society, gated complex, etc., you may often be getting complaints regarding street dogs, and requests that they be driven away, through beatings by security guards or otherwise, or just dumped elsewhere. If you accede to these requests, you will not only be violating laws and pronouncements of courts, but will not achieve any permanent solutions either. The problem will remain a perennial problem ; and you will also run afoul of animal welfare people that are increasing in number by the day, and banding themselves into well organized groups.

Below, are some DOs and DON’Ts, with respect to both, PET DOGS & STREET DOGS.

I.          WITH RESPECT TO PET DOGS & PET OWNING RESIDENTS :Please keep in mind that the following is what you CANNOT do :-

 BANNING pets, whether allowed :

a)     Even by obtaining consensus, or even if the majority of the residents want it, you cannot legally introduce any sort of ‘ban’ on the keeping of pet dogs by residents.

b)     Even by amending bye-laws or regulations or otherwise, such a ‘ban’ cannot be put into place since it is illegal, and does not have the sanction of law. In fact, in trying to ‘ban’ pets, or limit their number, you interfere with a fundamental freedom guaranteed to the citizens of India, i.e. the freedom to choose the life they wish to live, which includes facets such as living with or without companion animals.

c)    If the residents that have pets are not violating any municipal or other laws, you cannot object. The general body cannot frame or amend bye-laws that are at variance with the laws of the country. Even by a complete majority, a general body cannot adopt an illegality. Please remember, you do not have the right to legislate, and ‘lay down law’ for residents, and apartment owners or even tenants.

Use of LIFTS by pets :

d)    There is a court ruling to the effect that pets cannot be disallowed from the use of lifts ; and no charges can be imposed either, by housing societies for the use of lifts by pets. In fact, it was widely reported in the news that the concerned court had ruled that “Dogs are family, can use lifts for free”. Kindly ensure that this sort of restriction is not therefore imposed – neither a ban, nor any special charges for the use of lifts by pets.

 Use of PARKS by pets :

e)    Banning pets from gardens or parks, is short-sighted. Firstly, you may or may not own the garden or park in question. It may be an MCD or DDA park, or belong to any other organization. Secondly, pets that are not properly exercised may show aggression in frustration ; and that, surely, cannot contribute to the benefit of the residents. It may be better to fix timings when pets can be walked without inconvenience to other residents. These timings can then be intimated to the general body.

Use of leashes/muzzles by pet owners, defecation by pets in community premises, imposition of fines and other similar measures :

f)     You can request pet owners to keep their pets on leash, when walking them in common areas. You cannot however ask for muzzles as muzzles are illegal for sustained use as dogs die through overheating. Please remember, the law already provides for penalties for negligent pet owners, which the aggrieved parties can avail of.

g)    In the absence of central or state laws requiring cleaning of pet poop by pet owners, you cannot impose any rule, regulation or bye-law, with respect to mandatory cleaning of pet poop, or impose special charges or fines on pet owners. You can, of course, request them to do so.

h)    You can also experiment with the creation of various pet defecation areas within community premises, which is what some housing societies and sectors are doing. These can be imaginatively spaced out within the precincts, and you can request pet owners to train their pets into using the same. You cannot however impose fines and special charges of any kind on pet owners, because there is no mandate in law for the same.

Intimidation :

i)     Lastly, please also always bear in mind that if any association succeeds in intimidating a pet owner into ‘giving up’ or ‘abandoning’ a pet, it will actually have contributed to a violation of law ; and may well be aggravating the menace of ownerless animals on the street, that are not accustomed to living on the street and therefore get involved in and lead to accidents, injuries and deaths. Please also bear in mind that intimidation is an offense in law.

II.         WITH RESPECT TO STREET DOGS :What you CANNOT do :-

1)         Beating and driving away street dogs, NOT ALLOWED ; animal birth control and release back into same locality/territory, ALLOWED :

As per Indian law street dogs (i.e. stray dogs) cannot be beaten or driven away or dumped elsewhere or killed. They can merely be sterilized in the manner envisaged in the Animal Birth Control (Dogs) Rules, 2001, vaccinated, and then returned back to their original locations. For the area-wise sterilization program that the law mandates shall be followed, dogs have to be returned back to their original habitat after sterilization and immunization.

2)         The rationale behind release into the same locality/territory :

Dogs, being territorial in nature, tend to fight off other dogs, and keep them from entering their territories ; and in this manner, the dog population in each territory / within each locale, stabilizes.If, however, they are removed permanently, other dogs come into the ‘dog-free’ vacuum that is thereby created. So the ‘problem’ continues.

3)         Street dog feeding, whether inside or outside community premises :

 There is no law that prohibits the feeding of street animals.Citizens who choose to do so are in fact performing a duty cast upon them by the Constitution of India – of showing compassion to all living creatures. As recently as the 12th of December, 2011, stray dog feeding has been upheld yet again by the High Court, and the emphatic challenge to the same by one R.W.A., disregarded.

4)         Animal cruelty :

Please also note, animal cruelty is an offence – under Section 11 of the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act, and Section 428 of the Indian Penal Code –punishable with imprisonment and fine.

5)         Intimidation :

Attempts to interfere with, or harass persons who choose to tend to and feed community dogs, maybe tantamount to the very grave offence of criminal intimidation.

6)         Aggression to dogs, counter productive :

Last but not the least : any aggression or hostility that the dogs may be subjected to, will only render them aggressive, and hostile to humans. They may then resort to snapping and biting in self -defense. If the same happens, the human aggressors shall be the only ones to blame.

Posted in Against Animal Cruelty, Animal Birth Control (ABC) Programme/Street Dog Sterilization, Animal Laws of India, Animals, Be the Change, Do you know?, Do-it-Yourself (DIY)Series: Animal Rescue and Treatment, Information that empowers!, News Reports, Street Dogs of India

Do-it-Yourself (DIY) Series-4: A Dossier of Indian Street Dog related laws and court rulings- Read, Print and Share widely

To all those who feed and take care of their neighbourhood street dogs in India, we have one request. Don’t feel weak. The laws are on your side and also in favour of the street dogs you care for.

In this post, we are sharing with you one comprehensive document that compiles all the laws, news-clippings and court orders/rulings, pertaining to street dogs

Please download this document by clicking here: A Dossier of Indian Street Dog related laws and court rulings

Save it, take print-outs and read it well.

These are updated laws, rules, orders pertaining to DOGS, their feeding and other rights. Most dog lovers don’t bother to read them and end up getting harassed while the law is strong and clear. Please keep a copy ready and if possible submit one copy in your local police station and the RWA, so unfortunate encounters can be averted beforehand. 

A point wise synopsis is also written in the beginning of this document.

We thank Citizens for Animal Rights for their effort in compiling this document and sharing the same with us. By posting it here, we are sharing it further and hope you all will share it widely too and feel empowered.

Remember: Your responsibility however doesn’t end with just feeding them, please also ensure that these dogs you care for are sterilized and vaccinated…since you are friendly with them, can touch them, it is much easier for you to collaborate with the NGO run Animal Hospital (that runs the local Municipality supported ‘Animal Birth Control’ Programme for street dogs) near your home to help undertake the sterilization of these dogs, it is just a one time exercise and will prevent you the agony of seeing pups dying (of illnesses and car accidents) in front of your eyes ever so frequently.

Posted in Animals, Be the Change, Do you know?, Do-it-Yourself (DIY)Series: Animal Rescue and Treatment, General/Animals, Information that empowers!, Inspiration, Jaagruti's interventions, Medical treatment of Animals, Stories from Ground Zero, Street Dogs of India, Take Action!

Do-it-Yourself (DIY)Series-1: How do we pick up street dogs and take them to the nearest vet in our car

We are no experts and neither do we run an animal ambulance or hospital that tends to animals. We do it one street dog (or at best two or three) at a time and try to do our best in getting them treated/taking care of them and returning them back to the streets/areas where we picked them up/rescued them from.

We would like to share here what we have learnt, in our few years of doing this work on how best YOU can also try to pick an animal in need; place them in your car and take them to the nearest good vet for treatment/first aid.

Sometimes, a few regular visits to a good vet are all the injured street dog needs to recover back to full fitness. Also, try and learn some animal first aid yourself; and keep a first aid kit handy with regular medicines (please read this link: https://jaagruti.org/first-aid-for-dogs/)

Please remember sending each and every injured/ill animal to the animal hospital is NOT the solution. The animals recover better when treated on the streets, wherever possible, when tended to by animal lovers in the area and taken to vets, as advised periodically(and given supplementary medication mixed in food as advised by the vet) till they have completely recovered.

Some vets also do street dog sterilization surgeries (by prior appointments only) at their private clinics, at minimal costs for the dog lovers who tend to street dogs in their area and are willing to take care of the sterilized dogs in their homes for a few nights till they recover from the surgery, by sheltering them at their homes for this period of recovery. You need to find such good veterinary surgeons around your home so that tending to animals and getting them treated, sterilized and vaccinated doesn’t become a stressful chore for you, but rather a duty you perform with smile and satisfaction.

However, dogs do try to run away when they sense that you are trying to catch them…when they are injured, they may also tend to bite you, that is not because they hurt you, but because they are already in pain, that may have been inflicted by ‘humans’ only, and are thus less trusting of you

So here goes our checklist for catching an injured street dog and taking them for medical treatment:

 1. Make sure you are at least two people, as two are always better than one, when it comes to extending moral, emotional and physical support to each other…all of which is required when it comes to getting an injured animal treated.

2. Take some dry dog food with you to tempt the animal to you and allowing the animal to trust you to pet/touch them.

3. Equipments you will need to catch a dog:

a. A naada i.e. a cloth string/rope that is used to tie pyjamas here in India)- it works better than a muzzle and we use the same to tie the dog’s mouth and then take it around the neck and tie it at the back of the neck. The naada is gentle and better on the snout.

b. A dog leash (one with collar and one without collar)- the handle of the leash without the collar also acts as a good thing to put around the dog’s neck, while sliding the leash through it so that it becomes a lock.

c. Cover your car seats/floor with a waterproof cloth or/and old bed sheets to avoid getting your car covers/flooring dirty, as the dogs may vomit (due to motion sickness), pee/urinate or poo/defacate en-route, please be prepared for it (Do this preparatory work in your car before you go to rescue the dog).

4. Lifting the dog: Once the snout is muzzled and the leash is tied around their neck (which also gives us a chance to ensure that the dog doesn’t run away once we land at the vet’s clinic), and then lift the dog up in your arms by placing your hands across/under their chest to establish a tight grip as you lift them up. Yes, you are thinking right, you need to be physically strong and firm on your feet to lift dogs up in your arms this way.

5. Place the dog in your car: We take the dogs in our car, we have a Santro, we push down/fold down the backseat, so that the boot of the car and this space adds up and the dog has enough space. Sometimes, for small-sized dogs, we have used pet carriers; but mostly, we just place them in the car the above way and then when we reach our destination (the vet’s place/hospital)…once you have placed the dog inside your car, roll down the window just by a few inches (for ventilation) and not too much the dog tries to stick its neck out and run away.

Street dog being taken in our car for treatment at the nearest vet's clinic
Street dog being taken in our car for treatment at the nearest vet’s clinic

6. Also, try to ensure a crowd doesn’t gather (which may happen, as the dog being caught will try to scream as a defensive reaction); too many people crowding together will make the animal nervous. To disperse the crowd, take help of your team mates and gently try to explain them what you are doing and request them to disperse.

What we do? We have, through experience, learnt to talk and explain about such things gradually with different kinds of people; and when we are only trying to benefit a living being, what’s the shame in trying to answer curious queries…People do listen. While we request people to move inside their homes and not crowd about as the animal is in any case scared, some listen, some don’t and when they don’t, sometimes we have to be forceful and assertive in requesting them, while trying to make sure that we don’t enter into a fight by offending their sensibilities, its a test of patience we agree, but then it’s all worth it.

7. Once you reach the vet’s clinic, either request help from their paravets to take the dog from your car to the vet’s examination room/table. Or ensure that you lift the dog back into your arms carefully (taking care that all other windows/car gates are locked) and take him/her inside the clinic.

Please do share your experiences by writing to us at contact@jaagruti.org or posting comments below. This is just a synopsis of what we do and what works for us.

Thanks.

Posted in Against Animal Cruelty, Be the Change, Games people play, Inspiration, News Reports

If you’re different from the crowd, be proud of it

A few weeks back, someone happened to share with us the following article over an e-mail, the reason we are sharing it here is because we also get asked such questions repeatedly, by the people whom we interact professionally or personally, the most common of them being Why do you work for animals, when there are so many suffering humans around?

Also when we attend to animal-issues specific calls on the Jaagruti helpline, some callers often try to argue with us on the subject saying, ‘human lives are more precious than animals, Madam!’

This article, kind courtesy of OpEd News by Dr. Charles Patterson, author of Eternal Treblinka: Our Treatment of Animals and the Holocaust makes for an inspiring read for people like us, and also tries to address those who question people like us who dare and care to be different in their own quiet ways to make a difference to the animals around them and the humans who care for them.

“Against the Current”

How often have you heard complaints that animal activists are misguided and have misplaced priorities? The implication is that people who care about animals are disrespectful of or even hostile to human values, the oppression of animals being the oldest and most strongly defended human prerogative. Critics ask, how can the interests of animals in any way be as important as human problems like war, poverty, disease, hunger, AIDS, racism, genocide?

Those who claim that the lives of animals are of little or no importance reflect the deep-seated speciesism of our society. They defend the status quo of human supremacy as strongly as the supporters of slavery and white supremacy used to claim that the lives and well-being of slaves were of little or no importance.

Another deep-seated conviction of our society is that when it comes to animals, might makes right. The late AIDS and animal activist, Steven Simmons, described the attitude: “Animals are the innocent casualties of the world view that asserts that some lives are more valuable than others, that the powerful are entitled to exploit the powerless, and that the weak must be sacrificed for the greater good.”

This is, of course, fascism pure and simple. Indeed, it was Mr. Fascism himself, Adolph Hitler, who stated the matter directly: “He, who does not possess power, loses the right to life.” How ironic that Hitler’s view is now flourishing in the United States where millions of cows, pigs, sheep, chickens and other innocent animals are killed every day because they are powerless to defend themselves against the might of the master species.

The great divide between humans and the rest of the earth’s inhabitants began about 11,000 years ago in the Middle East with the so-called “domestication” of animals. The enslavement of oxen, sheep, goats and other animals quickly led to human slavery and the treatment of human slaves like animals. The enslavement of animals increased significantly the level of cruelty, oppression, and conflict in human history.

The vilification of other people as animals followed. Europeans called Native Americans beasts, wolves, and snakes, and Africans transported to the Americas to be sold into slavery were treated like domesticated animals. During World War II Americans described the Japanese as yellow monkeys, dogs, rats, and vermin to be exterminated.

The vilification of people as animals made it that much easier to kill them because most humans have been brain washed from an early age to have little regard for the lives of animals.

In the memoirs of Holocaust survivors, the constant refrain is “they treated us like animals.” Victims of the Nazis were transported to extermination camps in cattle cars and were killed in assembly-line fashion, much like animals are killed today in American slaughterhouses.

The grim but undeniable truth is that our civilization is built on the exploitation and slaughter of animals, and it is from this core oppression that all other atrocities flow. The abuse of animals and the destruction of the earth are the crux of what’s wrong with our society.

Those who advocate for animals and fight for their liberation, radicals in the best sense of the word, are attacking the roots of human oppression in the most direct and effective way. Thank goodness there are people willing to go right to the heart of the matter with their dedicated activism. Each and every one of them is a hero and will be judged as such from the hindsight of history.

I’m reminded of the observation that Harriet Beecher Stowe, author of Uncle Tom’s Cabin, made more than a century ago. “It’s a matter of taking the side of the weak against the strong,” she said, “something the best people have always done.”

Don’t let anyone tell you that the life-and-death struggle for animals liberation against the fascist underpinnings of our society is anything other than a noble enterprise of the utmost urgency. Nothing is more important.

And don’t worry too much about complaints and criticism.

You will be going against the current of what society thinks, but so be it.

To quote the German poet Goethe, “The world only goes forward because of those who oppose it.”

 

About the author – Dr. Charles Patterson:

Dr. Charles Patterson is a social historian, Holocaust educator, editor, therapist, and author. His first book, Anti-Semitism: The Road to the Holocaust and Beyond, was called “important” by Publisher’s Weekly. The National Council for the Social Studies in Washington, D.C. presented Patterson with its Carter G. Woodson Book Award for his biography of Marian Anderson at a special luncheon at its annual convention in St. Louis, Missouri in 1989. His most recent book is Eternal Treblinka: Our Treatment of Animals and the Holocaust (now in 15 languages). For more information on his writings and activities, see his website.

Posted in Animals, General/Animals, Jaagruti's interventions, Medical treatment of Animals, Stories from Ground Zero, Street Dogs of India

Treating an old dog with Aural haematoma- Part 2

Dateline: October 2012

Two years back, we had penned a story on how we got an old black dog’s aural haematoma treated.

We had a smilar challenge to face with another old dog, a brown coloured male dog with a very peculiar personality disorder, which is that he wants you to love him, but he is cared of being touched. How does one take a dog with such a feeble heart in one’s car to the doctor’s clinic? We were in a dilemma, confused.

We tried to catch him many a times to take him to the vet’s place, just seeing us approaching him with a leash, he would start screaming on the top of his voice as if the leash was to strangle him.

We were sure we didn’t want him operated (i.e surgically treat him) for this aural haematoma, neither that dog or we had the hearts to brave it.

We discussed this with our trusted vet and requested him to send across his paravet with us to the street where this brown dog lives, the vet agreed and we decided that the best way forward was to aspirate the accumulated fluid out of the dog’s right swollen ear flap and insert antibiotics in the ear flap, that would help dry the fluid and heal the haematoma.

Moral of the story thus far: Have full faith in yourself and conviction in the choices you make. Then march ahead. More often than not, things will fall in place

This is what happened thereafter after the paravet arrived on the spot to execute the plan of medical-action.

Attempt 1: We tried to lure the dog to me with dog food, he came, ate and tried to run away and we couldn’t entice him to come near the paravet for he, i.e. the dog, smelt danger!

Attempt 2: We tried to lure the dog to me with dog food and distracted him, and the paravet from behind threw the leash around  the dog’s neck and using all our force, we managed to hold that dog in that steady position.

The paravet took position and a syringe (plunger with needle) was inserted into the swollen portion of the ear flap by the paravet and the fluid that had accumulated in the dog’s ear flap was sucked out (aspirated) and thrown away. The process was repeated (while keeping the needle fixed on the flap and just removing the syringe’s plunger portion) till the fluid was sucked out (as much as it could be).

Then a mixture of antibiotic Gentamycin and injectable medicine Prednisone (an anti-inflammatory drug that also promotes healing) was injected into the ear flap through that same needle which was left on the ear flap.

Apparently, as explained to us by the paravet, Prednisone as a medicine helps dry the fluid and heal such wounds.

And it worked, it has been a month since this exercise was undertaken and the flap though is now bent, it doesn’t have any fluid accumulated inside it.

This is how it all looks.

The Old Brown Dog’s right ear: Post non-surgical aspiration of aural haematoma fluid [Image (c) Jaagruti]

In the end, something to share…We at ‘Jaagruti’ often get questioned on our helpline number by many a rowdy people as to what we actually do, we tell them to read it on these pages on this blog (About Jaagruti, Contact Us and Animal Helplines in Delhi and NCR), we have clearly written on these pages what we are and what we are not, we have nothing to hide.

We don’t run an ambulance or a veterinary hospital, we don’t run a shelter, Jaagruti is a little effort wherein we try to share information and empower you, we try to listen to you when you call, we may not always have an answer, we are young and still learning, but we will always try to guide you with the best possible solution based on our understanding of the subject or issue and help you do what we aim to do, inspiring you to do a good deed a day. For we believe that if everyone were to do that, it will be a good day for many in need.

“Try to make at least one person happy every day. If you cannot do a kind deed, speak a kind word.

If you cannot speak a kind word, think a kind thought.”- Lawrence G. Lovasik 

And remember to smile, despite all the hardships that exist and you face, you’re beautiful and so is this world.

Posted in Animals, Be the Change, Inspiration, Jaagruti's interventions, Man and Animal: Stories of Kindness, Stories from Ground Zero, Videos, Videos on Animals

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!

Posted in Animals, Inspiration, Poems

What does it take to rescue an animal? – A poem by Bhavani Sundaram

This poem is the first in the series of many poems penned down and shared with us by Ms. Bhavani Sundaram to inspire you in sustaining your efforts to rescue an animal in distress…

A heart of gold to accept all animals in whatever state they come in

A heart of steel to be able to say no when there just isn’t room for one more dog

Knowing that you cannot save them all

Patience with breeders who don’t seem to care, won’t help saying it’s not their problem

Patience with those dogs that may never get adopted

A smiling face as it’s the only way to hide the agony, pain in one’s heart

A team effort where everyone contributes and works as for for one goal

Willingness & Openness to work for animals

Last but not the least a compassionate, loving heart….

Posted in Against Animal Cruelty, Animal Sacrifice, Animals, General/Animals, Stories from Ground Zero, Take Action!

Bakr-Eid: what happens to the goat?

This is one of the goats that would be sacrificed during this Bakr-EId. This photo was clicked while walking through the narrow bylanes of Chawri Bazaar in Old Delhi (Photo credit: Jaagruti)

Before you begin reading this, please allow us a moment to introduce Meera Ahmad (the contributor of the below post) to all of you.

Meera is a Ph.D student at University of Delhi and lives with her mother, brother Kabir and her canine companions in Nizamuddin. Meera is secular by birth, born to a Hindu mother and a Muslim father, her home is lovingly referred to as ‘Chintu Ghar’, the first time I visited her, I thought Chintu was the name of their first pet, but infact as Meera’s mother amusingly shared Chintu was their stuffed toy ‘Elephant’ whom they cuddled and cared for and were even willing to risk their lives for! (yes! yes! that is what Meera’s brother Kabir tried to do, when he jumped from the auto-rikshaw thinking that Chintu was in the bag that had fallen from her mother’s lap on the road). Perhaps it was Chintu, the elephant toy that made them realise that before they realised that their heart was filled with love for animals. Meera and her family look after and feed the many street dogs in Nizamuddin and at Lajpat Nagar as well, besides taking the responsibility of getting them sterilized and vaccinated at nearby animal hospitals.

When she saw a man taking his sick goat to an animal hospital yesterday, she was prompted to reflect over her thoughts on Bakr-Eid. Read on…

Bakr-Eid: what happens to the goat?

By Meera Ahmad

Yesterday, a man from my colony in Nizamuddin West took a sick goat to the nearby Friendicoes Animal Hospital

He said to the doctor: ” Please treat my goat so that it becomes well quickly. I have to cut it day after tomorrow.”

Animal sacrifice is the biggest farce and misplaced superstitious belief in the name of religion.

Today (17th November, 2010) is the first day of three days of Bakr-Eid or Eid al-Adha or Eid-e-Qurban. For Muslims it is a day to celebrate how Prophet Ibraham willingly almost sacrificed his own son Isma’il as an act of obedience to God, before God intervened and gave him a ram to sacrifice instead. To commemorate it Muslim families blindly sacrifice many animals (goat, cow, sheep, camel) on this day often after days of feeding and caring for them extremely well. The act of sacrifice carried out in Muslim homes is extremely cruel as the goats are killed slowly in front of each other by the very people who fed and nurtured them and whom they came to trust deeply. Children too are encouraged to cut them on these days from a very young age so that they become conditioned to it.

In my colony a few weeks before the festival it is common to see children roaming about with healthy and well nurtured goats and grazing them in the parks and bylanes. After the sacrifice I have spoken to them and they comfortably and eagerly narrate gory details of how they carried out halal (religiously permissible form of sacrifice in which the animal’s throat is slit to slowly bleed it death so that it is drained of all the blood before being skinned and cut) of the goats.

So deeply engrained becomes the notion of halal in them that they even practice it on toys and stuffed animals. In an extreme case I remember hearing that a child slit the throat of his pet rabbit. When his mother came running on hearing the wails of the poor animal and asked the child why he did it he said proudly that he had done halal. My neighbor’s young daughter who studies in class 2 was last year wailing uncontrollably outside her house on Bakr-Eid for she wanted to cajole her father to let her keep the baby goat that he had brought for sacrifice and not let it be killed. When her father asked her the reason for it she said she wanted to play with it and make it her pet. However, her tantrums didn’t have any effect. A few ays back when I saw her roaming in the park with a goat on leash I could not resist asking her what she would do with it. She said that she would do it halal. Her father had convinced her that the goats that are done halal on these days are fortunate as they go straight to God (Allah).

That the animals are alive and moving for quite sometime after their throats are cut and while they are being skinned was pointed out to me by children who have witnessed and participated in the sacrifice.The goats that are to be cut on the following days are kept in the same place where their fellows were cut, skinned and hung in front of their eyes. They kick and cry loudly for days and nights before the sacrifice, but once the killing begins they go eeringly quiet. It is as if the face of imminent death makes them mum. A look at their faces and in their eyes chills the soul. I have always felt it is a look of resignation, dullness and deep gloom.

“The mullah finishes the prayer. Ameen. He picks up the kichen knife with the long blade. The custom is to not let the sheep see the kinife. Ali feeds the animal a cube of sugar – another custom, to make eath sweeter. The sheep kicks, but not much. The mullah grabs it under its jaw and places the blade on its neck. Just a second before he slices the throat in one expert motion, I see the sheep’s eyes. It is alook that will haunt my dreams for weeks. I don’t know why I watchj this yearly ritual in ou backyard; my nightmares persist long after the blood stains on the grass have faded. But I always watch. I watch because of that look of acceptance in the animal’s eyes. Absurdly, I imagine tha animal understands. I imagine the animal sees that its imminent demise is for a higher purpose. This is the look……..” -Khaled Hosseni, The Kiterunner.

Nature provides food to goats, cows, sheep so they can live well. Humans provide food to them so they can kill and cut them. Nature provides food to goats, cows, sheep so they can live well. Humans provide food to them so they can kill and cut them. If we really love our earth and want it to be a comfortable place for future generations, we all need to start reflecting on our daily decisions. How we live. What we eat. What we buy. How and where it is made. How we travel. Everything we habitually do has an impact and also sets an example. One of the most important among these is our relationship with the animals of this planet that should be of compassion and protection. This change may not always be easy or comfortable, but it is certainly better than doing nothing and lamenting later. Let us start by raising our voice against animal sacrifice and slaughter.

kurbaan-kurbaani_goats-before-being-scarificed-on-id_ht-city_281109

Other posts by Meera Ahmad:

Abandoning one’s pet: Could there be a crime bigger than that?

Posted in Against Animal Cruelty, Animal Birth Control (ABC) Programme/Street Dog Sterilization, Animal Laws of India, Animals, Do you know?, General/Animals, Information that empowers!, News Reports, Street Dogs of India

The ABC of stray dogs

Animal Birth Control: Its as easy as ABC (Image Courtesy PETA)

Animal Birth Control/ABC Programm involves sterilizing street dogs, vaccinating them against rabies and releasing them back into the areas where they were picked up from.

The article below is kind courtesy of  The Pioneer Newspaper, penned by noted senior journalist Mr. Hiranmay Karlekar who is also the author of a book titled ‘Savage Humans and Stray Dogs’, the article sheds light on the ‘ABC’ of Delhi’s Animal Birth Control/ABC Programme, comes in the wake of the Commonwealth Games recently organised in Delhi in which many street canines (sterilized as well as non-sterilized) were temporarily (for the period of these games) relocated to Animal shelters across Delhi and Noida from many games venues, stadia, hotels, all of whom have now been released back into the areas where they were picked up from (and those canines that were not sterilized were also sterilized in the process and vaccinated against Rabies at the shelters/hospitals they were housed at prior to being released back to their homes). There is a whole scientific basis and reasoning behind doing so and that is what Mr. Karlekar enlightens us all on below. If you still have doubts, drop in a comment underneath or mail us at contact@jaagruti.org

The Pioneer EDITS | Saturday, October 23, 2010, By Hiranmay Karlekar

It’s a fallacy to believe that killing street dogs will bring down their numbers. But sterilising them helps in reducing and stabilising their population

According to a report, the Mayor of Delhi has said in an interview to a news channel that the national capital’s stray dogs, which had been removed from their habitats for the duration of the Commonwealth Games, should be killed or kept where they had been taken. He, however, has also reportedly said on television that it was inhuman to kill dogs. I have neither heard either statement nor talked to him. I will, therefore, not go into what he did or did not say. Nor will I criticise him on that account. Instead, I would focus on the issues in question.

Animal Birth Control (Dog) Rules, notified in December 2001 under the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act (1960), prohibits the killing of stray dogs except in special cases, as when they are rabid or terminally ill. In these too, prescribed procedures have to be followed. Besides, the Rules provide that stray dogs can only be removed from their habitats for neutering and immunisation against rabies. Both done, they have to be returned to places from which they had been taken.

The Rules prescribe the only scientific — and also humane — way of controlling stray dog populations. Killing or removal has not helped anywhere. Dr K Vogel, Chief Veterinary, Public Health, Division of Communicable Diseases, World Health Organisation, and Mr John Hoyt, then President, World Society for the Protection of Animals, made this clear in their joint preface to the Guidelines for Dog Population Management, released by the WHO and WSPA in May 1990. They stated, “All too often, authorities confronted by problems caused by these (stray) dogs have turned to mass destruction in the hope of finding a quick solution, only to find that the destruction had to continue year after year, with no end in sight.”

In its Eighth Report (WHO Technical Report Series 824), WHO’s Expert Committee on Rabies, which met in Geneva from September 24 to 30, stated, “There is no evidence that the removal of dogs has ever had a significant impact on dog population densities and the spread of rabies. The population turnover of dogs may be so high that even the highest recorded removal rates (about 15 per cent of the dog population) are easily compensated by survival rates.” This has been conclusively established in Delhi. In his “Dogs and Dog Control in Developing Countries”, published in The State of Animals 2005, Dr JF Reese writes, “In Delhi, a concerted effort (pre-Animal Birth Control, or ABC) at dog removal killed a third of the straying dogs with no reduction in dog population.”

It has been the same experience everywhere. In his paper, “ABC responsible for decline in human rabies cases”, Dr Chinny Krishna, co-founder and chairman of the Blue Cross Society of India, cites the instance of Madras Corporation’s catch-and-kill programme that began in 1860. He quotes Mr Theodore Bhaskaran, a retired Post Master-General, as stating in an article, “In the 1970s the number of stray dogs destroyed by the corporation was so high that the Central Leather Institute, Madras, designed products —such as neckties and wallets — from dog skins.” Dr Krishna has pointed out elsewhere that the number of dogs killed by the corporation had gone up to 30,000 per year by 1995. Yet the city’s stray dog population and the incidence of rabies continued to increase.

Why does killing or removal not help? According to the Guidelines for Dog Population Management, each habitat has “a specific carrying capacity for each species”, which “essentially depends on the availability, quality and distribution of the resources (shelter, food, water) for the species concerned. The density of population for higher vertebrates (including dogs) is almost always near the carrying capacity of the environment. Any reduction in the population density through additional mortality is rapidly compensated by better reproduction and survival.”

The argument that such a situation will not arise if all stray dogs in a city or country are killed at one go, holds little water. Nowhere has such a venture succeeded. Besides, dogs are territorial. Dogs from one area do not allow those from other areas to enter their areas. Dogs from other areas will occupy any area in which all stray dogs have been massacred. This territorial character of dogs lies at the heart of the ABC programme. With sterilised and vaccinated dogs keeping un-sterilised and un-vaccinated dogs away from their areas, those implementing the programme can concentrate on progressing area by area until a whole city is covered. Otherwise, they will have to keep returning to areas where they had already been with the stray dog population continuing to grow elsewhere.

Significantly, WHO’s Expert Consultation on Rabies, held in Geneva from October 5 to 8, 2004, had stated (WHO: Technical Report Series 824), “Since the 1960s, ABC programmes coupled with rabies vaccination have been advocated as a method to control urban street male and female dog populations and ultimately human rabies in Asia The rationale is to reduce the dog population turnover as well as the number of dogs susceptible to rabies in Asia and limit aspects of male dog behaviour (such as dispersal and fighting) that facilitate the spread of rabies.”

Delhi has had a reasonably successful ABC programme since 2003. Between 40 and 50 per cent of the dogs removed from the Commonwealth Games sites to the care of NGOs were found neutered. At this rate the target of 70 per cent, required to stabilise and then gradually bring down stray dog populations, should be reached in the next few years. Meanwhile, one needs to congratulate the Government and Municipal Corporation of Delhi, the New Delhi Municipal Council and NGOs like Friendicoes, Cure & Care, Sonadi, PAWS and Sanjay Gandhi Animal Care Centre and SPCA NOIDA for the manner in which they temporarily relocated and looked after around 700 dogs. The glitches that occurred were perhaps inevitable in an exercise of the magnitude undertaken. While Mr Rakesh Mehta, Chief Secretary of Delhi, and Mr KS Mehra, Commissioner of MCD, cut through all bureaucratic red tape to promptly take the big decisions, Dr RBS Tyagi and Dr Alok Agarwal of MCD and Dr Dinesh Yadav of NDMC worked tirelessly, almost round-the-clock. Animal lovers throughout India need to warmly applaud all of them.

Posted in Animals, Do you know?, General/Animals, Information that empowers!, Pets, Street Dogs of India

Foods and Poisonous Plants to avoid for Cats and Dogs

This post is kind courtesy of Charu Shah

FOOD TO AVOID FOR DOGS-

  • Alcoholic beverages–  Can cause intoxication, coma, and death.
  • Avocado– The leaves, seeds, fruit, and bark contain persin, which can cause vomiting and diarrhea.
  • Bones from fish, poultry, or other meat sources–  Can cause obstruction or laceration of the digestive system.
  • Cat food– Generally too high in protein and fats.
  • Chocolate, coffee, tea, and other caffeine – Contain caffeine, theobromine, or theophylline, which can cause vomiting and diarrhea and be toxic to the heart and nervous systems.
  • Citrus oil–  extracts Can cause vomiting.
  • Fat trimmings–  Can cause pancreatitis.
  • Fish (raw, canned or cooked) – If fed exclusively or in high amounts can result in a thiamine (a B vitamin) deficiency leading to loss of appetite, seizures, and in severe cases, death.
  • Grapes, raisins and currants – Contain an unknown toxin, which can damage the kidneys. There have been no problems associated with grape seed extract.
  • Hops- Unknown compound causes panting, increased heart rate, elevated temperature, seizures, and death.
  • Human vitamin supplements containing iron – Can damage the lining of the digestive system and be toxic to the other organs including the liver and kidneys.
  • Macadamia nuts- Contain an unknown toxin, which can affect the digestive and nervous systems and muscle.
  • Marijuana – Can depress the nervous system, cause vomiting, and changes in the heart rate.
  • Milk and other dairy products- Some adult dogs and cats may develop diarrhea if given large amounts of dairy products.
  • Moldy or spoiled food, garbage- Can contain multiple toxins causing vomiting and diarrhea and can also affect other organs.
  • Mushrooms- Can contain toxins, which may affect multiple systems in the body, cause shock, and result in death.
  • Onions and garlic (raw, cooked, or powder)- Contain sulfoxides and disulfides, which can damage red blood cells and cause anemia. Cats are more susceptible than dogs. Garlic is less toxic than onions.
  • Persimmons Seeds- can cause intestinal obstruction and enteritis.
  • Pits from peaches and plums- Can cause obstruction of the digestive tract.
  • Raw eggs- Contain an enzyme called avidin, which decreases the absorption of biotin (a B vitamin). This can lead to skin and hair coat problems. Raw eggs may also contain Salmonella.
  • Raw meat- May contain bacteria such as Salmonella and E. coli, which can cause vomiting and diarrhea.
  • Rhubarb leaves- Contain oxalates, which can affect the digestive, nervous, and urinary systems.
  • Salt- If eaten in large quantities it may lead to electrolyte imbalances.
  • String- Can become trapped in the digestive system; called a “string foreign body.”
  • Sugary foods- Can lead to obesity, dental problems, and possibly diabetes mellitus.
  • Table scraps (in large amounts)- Table scraps are not nutritionally balanced. They should never be more than 10% of the diet. Fat should be trimmed from meat; bones should not be fed.
  • Tobacco Contains nicotine, which affects the digestive and nervous systems. Can result in rapid heart beat, collapse, coma, and death.
  • Yeast dough- Can expand and produce gas in the digestive system, causing pain and possible rupture of the stomach or intestines.
  • Xylitol (artificial sweetener also used in sugar free chewing gums)-Can cause very low blood sugar (hypoglycemia), which can result in vomiting, weakness and collapse. In high doses can cause liver failure.

 

 

 

FOOD TO AVOID FOR CATS-

 

  • Alcoholic beverages– Can cause intoxication, coma, and death.
  • Baby food– Can contain onion powder, which can be toxic to cats fed baby food for an extended period of time. (Please see onion below.) Can also result in nutritional deficiencies, if fed in large amounts.
  • Bones from fish, poultry, or other meat sources– Can cause obstruction or laceration of the digestive system.
  • Canned tuna (for human consumption)- Large amounts can cause malnutrition, since it lacks proper levels of vitamins and minerals. It can also lead to thiamine deficiency (see ‘Fish’ below).
  • Chocolate, coffee, tea, and other caffeine– Contain caffeine, theobromine, or theophylline, which can cause vomiting and diarrhea and be toxic to the heart and nervous system.
  • Citrus oil extracts– Can cause vomiting.
  • Dog food– If accidental ingestion, will not cause a problem; if fed repeatedly, may result in malnutrition and diseases affecting the heart.
  • Fat trimmings– Can cause pancreatitis.
  • Fish (raw, canned or cooked)– If fed exclusively or in high amounts can result in a thiamine (a B vitamin) deficiency leading to loss of appetite, seizures, and in severe cases, death. for people who think fish is the only thing cats need to eat, please check thishttp://catnutrition.wordpress.com/2007/09/22/eight-strikes-against-fishy-feeding-for-cats/
  • Grapes, raisins and currants– Contain an unknown toxin, which can damage the kidneys.
  • Human vitamin supplements containing iron– Can damage the lining of the digestive system and be toxic to the other organs including the liver and kidneys.
  • Macadamia nuts– Contain an unknown toxin, which can affect the digestive and nervous systems and muscle.
  • Marijuana– Can depress the nervous system, cause vomiting, and changes in the heart rate.
  • Milk and other dairy products– Some adult cats and dogs may develop diarrhea if given large amounts of dairy products.
  • Moldy or spoiled food, garbage– Can contain multiple toxins causing vomiting and diarrhea and can also affect other organs.
  • Mushrooms- Can contain toxins, which may affect multiple systems in the body, cause shock, and result in death.
  • Onions and garlic (raw, cooked, or powder)- Contain sulfoxides and disulfides, which can damage red blood cells and cause anemia. Cats are more susceptible than dogs. Garlic is less toxic than onions.
  • Persimmons Seeds– can cause intestinal obstruction and enteritis.
  • Raw eggs– Contain an enzyme called avidin, which decreases the absorption of biotin (a B vitamin). This can lead to skin and hair coat problems. Raw eggs may also contain Salmonella.
  • Raw meat– May contain bacteria such as Salmonella and E. coli, which can cause vomiting and diarrhea.
  • Rhubarb leaves– Contain oxalates, which can affect the digestive, nervous, and urinary systems.
  • Salt– If eaten in large quantities it may lead to electrolyte imbalances.
  • String– Can become trapped in the digestive system; called a “string foreign body.”
  • Sugary foods– Can lead to obesity, dental problems, and possibly diabetes mellitus.
  • Table scraps (in large amounts)- Table scraps are not nutritionally balanced. They should never be more than 10% of the diet. Fat should be trimmed from meat; bones should not be fed.
  • Tobacco– Contains nicotine, which affects the digestive and nervous systems. Can result in rapid heart beat, collapse, coma, and death.
  • Yeast dough– Can expand and produce gas in the digestive system, causing pain and possible rupture of the stomach or intestines.

 

 

POISONOUS PLANTS-

10 Most Common Poisonous Plants

  • Marijuana – Animals who attempt to snack on this plant can suffer serious consequences such as diarrhea, vomiting, increased heart rate, drooling, in-coordination, and even possibly seizures and coma.
  • Sago Palm – While the seeds and nuts of this plant are most poisonous, the entire plant is toxic.  Animals ingesting parts of this plant may suffer from diarrhea, vomiting, depression, seizures and liver failure.
  • Lilies – Plants of the lily variety are very poisonous to cats.  Even very small amounts of this plant could cause serious kidney damage.
  • Tulips – The toxic portion of this plant is the actual bulb, which can cause drooling, central nervous system depression, gastrointestinal irritation, cardiac issues and convulsions.
  • Azalea – The toxins in azalea plants can be very severe and potentially cause drooling, diarrhea, vomiting, central nervous system weakening and depression, and in some cases possibly coma or death.
  • Oleander – All portions of this plant are poisonous and can cause gastrointestinal irritation, hypothermia, heart problems and possibly death.
  • Castor Bean – Poisoning as a result of this plant can cause abdominal pain, drooling, diarrhea, vomiting increased thirst, loss of appetite and weakness.  More serious cases could also lead to dehydration, tremors, seizures, twitching muscles, coma and possibly death.
  • Cyclamen – The most poisonous portion of this plant is located in the root.  Ingestion of the plant can cause severe vomiting and gastrointestinal irritation.  In some cases death has been reported as a result.
  • Kalanchoe – Ingestion of this plant can cause gastrointestinal irritation and cardiac rhythm and rate problems.
  • Yew – Poisoning as a result of the yew plant can affect the nervous system and cause in-coordination, trembling and breathing difficulties.  It may also result in gastrointestinal irritation, cardiac failure and could possibly lead to death.

 

 

other well-known and common plants that can be poisonous or toxic to pets.

 

  • Aconite – Is a garden flower whose roots, foliage and seeds can be poisonous.
  • Apple – The seeds of an apple can be poisonous to pets.
  • Arrowgrasses – These are marsh type plants whose leaves contain poisons.
  • Atropa Belladonna – This is a type of garden herb in which the entire plant can be poisonous to pets, especially its seeds and roots.
  • Autumn Crocus – This is a commonly found garden flower in which the entire plant can be poisonous.
  • Baneberry – This is a wildflower whose berries and roots are the poisonous portions.
  • Bird of Paradise – This is a garden flower whose pods are poisonous.
  • Black Locust – This is a tree in which the entire plant can be poisonous, especially the bark and shoots.
  • Bloodroot – Is a wildflower and herb whose stem and roots are most poisonous, however the entire plant is toxic.
  • Box – Is an ornamental shrub that is poisonous in its entirety, but especially the leaves.
  • Buckeye – This is a tree whose sprouts, nuts and seeds contain poisons.
  • Buttercup – This is a wildflower and garden herb that is poisonous in its entirety but mostly in the leaves.
  • Caladium – Is a houseplant that is poisonous in its entirety.
  • Carolina Jessamine – This is an ornamental plant whose flowers and leaves contain poisons.
  • Chinaberry Tree – Is a tree whose berries are poisonous.
  • Chockcherries – This is a wild shrub whose poisonous parts include the leaves, cherries and pit.
  • Christmas Rose – Is a garden flower that contains toxic leaves and rootstock.
  • Common Privet – Is an ornamental shrub whose leaves and berries can be poisonous.
  • Corn Cockle – Is a wildflower and weed whose seeds are particularly poisonous.
  • Cowbane – This is a wildflower and herb that is poisonous in its entirety, especially the roots.
  • Cow Cockle – Is a wildflower and weed whose seeds are poisonous.
  • Cowslip – Is a wildflower and herb whose entire plant is poisonous, especially the leaves and stem.
  • Daffodil – Is a garden flower whose bulbs are poisonous.
  • Daphne – This is an ornamental shrub that contains poisonous bark, berries and leaves.
  • Death Camas – This is a field herb whose poisonous parts include the leaves, stems, seeds and flowers.
  • Delphinium – Is a wildflower that is poisonous in its entirety, especially the sprouts.
  • Dumbcane – This is a houseplant and is poisonous in its entirety.
  • Dutchman’s Breeches – Is a wild and garden flower whose roots and foliage are poisonous.
  • Elderberry – Is a tree whose poisonous parts include the leaves, bark, roots and buds.
  • Elephant’s Ear – This is a houseplant poisonous in its entirety.
  • English Ivy – Is an ornamental vine that is completely poisonous but especially the leaves and berries.
  • European Bittersweet – This is a vine poisonous in its entirety but especially in the berries.
  • False Flax – Is a wild herb whose seeds are poisonous.
  • False Hellebore – Is an ornamental flower whose roots, leaves and seeds are toxic.
  • Fan Weed – This is a wildflower and herb whose seeds are poisonous.
  • Field Peppergrass – Is a wildflower and herb that contains poisonous seeds.
  • Flax – Is a wildflower and herb whose seedpods contain poisons.
  • Foxglove – This is a wild and garden flower whose leaves are poisonous.
  • Holly – Is a shrub containing poisonous berries.
  • Horsechestnut – Is a tree containing poisonous nuts and sprouts.
  • Horse Nettle – Is a wildflower and herb poisonous in its entirety, especially the berries.
  • Hyacinth – This is a wild and houseplant whose bulbs are poisonous.
  • Iris – Is a wild and garden flower whose leaves and roots are poisonous.
  • Jack-in-the-Pulpit – Is a wildflower that is entirely poisonous, especially the leaves and roots.
  • Jatropha – This is a tree and shrub whose seeds are poisonous.
  • Jerusalem Cherry – Is an ornamental plant whose un-ripened fruit and foliage are poisonous.
  • Jimsonweed – Is a field plant that is entirely poisonous, especially the seeds.
  • Laburum – Is an ornamental plant whose seeds, pods and flowers can be poisonous.
  • Lantana – Is a houseplant whose foliage is poisonous.
  • Larkspur – Is a wildflower that is poisonous only as a young plant.
  • Laurels – This is a type of shrub with poisonous leaves.
  • Lupines – Is a shrub whose seeds and pods are poisonous.
  • Manchineel Tree – A tree containing poisonous sap and fruit.
  • Matrimony Vine – An ornamental vine containing poisonous leaves and shoots.
  • Mayapple – A wildflower poisonous in the form of its un-ripened fruit as well as the foliage and roots.
  • Milk Vetch – A wildflower poisonous in its entirety.
  • Mistletoe – A houseplant with poisonous berries.
  • Monkshood – A wildflower poisonous in its entirety, especially the roots and seeds.
  • Moodseed – A vine whose fruit and roots are poisonous.
  • Morning Glory – Is a wildflower containing poisonous seeds and roots.
  • Mountain Mahogany – Is a shrub with poisonous leaves.
  • Mustards – These are wildflowers whose seeds can be poisonous.
  • Narcissus – This is a garden flower whose bulbs contain poisons.
  • Nicotiana – Is a garden flower whose leaves are poisonous.
  • Nightshade – Is a wildflower and vine with poisonous leaves and berries.
  • Oaks – Are trees with poisonous leaves and shoots.
  • Philodendrons – Are houseplants poisonous in their entirety.
  • Pokeweed – Is a field plant containing poisonous roots, seeds and berries.
  • Poinsettia – Is a houseplant with poisonous leaves, flowers and stems.
  • Poison Hemlock – This is a field plant containing poisonous leaves, stems and fruit.
  • Potato – A garden plant whose shoots and sprouts can be poisonous.
  • Rattle Box – Is a wildflower that is entirely poisonous.
  • Rhododendron – Is an ornamental shrub whose leaves are poisonous.
  • Rhubarb – A garden plant with poisonous leaves.
  • Rosary Pea – Is a houseplant whose seeds are poisonous.
  • Skunk Cabbage – This is a marsh plant whose entire plant is poisonous but especially the roots and leaves.
  • Smart Weeds – Are wildflowers containing poisonous sap.
  • Snow-on-the-Mountain – This is a wildflower whose sap is poisonous.
  • Sorghum – Is a type of grass whose leaves are poisonous.
  • Star of Bethlehem – Is a wildflower poisonous in its entirety.
  • Velvet Grass – A variety of grass whose leaves are poisonous.
  • Wild Black Cherry – Is a tree with poisonous leaves and pits.
  • Wild Radish – A wildflower with poisonous seeds.
  • Wisteria – Is an ornamental plant containing poisonous seeds and pods.
  • Woody Aster – A wildflower whose entire plant is poisonous.
  • Yellow Jessamine – An ornamental vine that is entirely poisonous.
  • Yellow Pine Flax – A wildflower poisonous in its entirety but especially in the seedpods.

 

Posted in Against Animal Cruelty, Animal Laws of India, Animals, Be the Change, News Reports, Stories from Ground Zero, Street Dogs of India, Take Action!

Commonwealth Games and Street Dogs

 

(Courtesy: Associated Press, http://oneclick.indiatimes.com)

 

After the news of the report submitted by Commonwealth Games Federation President and CEO was made public by the electronic media early this week,  it was apparently qouted and shown in the photographs submitted by the committee that, “there were pug marks of street dogs on the mattresses in the apartments of the games villages that are due to host the athletes as well as their faeces littered in the Games village”.

Since people in foriegn countries are not used to co-existing with dogs the way we Indians are, the CWG commitee had expressed their concern regarding the presence of street dogs in the Games village and asked for their removal.

But as per the Indian Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act 1960, Delhi High Court orders and orders of the Supreme Court, the street dogs from any area can be removed only for sterilization and vaccination purposes and then they have to be released back into the same area from where they were picked up.

Thus, due to the timely intervention of Major General (Retd) Dr. R.M Kharb, Chairperson, Animal Welfare Board of India and Mr. Hiranmay Karlekar, Member, Animal Welfare Board of India and the pro-active humane outlook adopted by the Commissioner of Municipal Corporation of Delhi (MCD) Mr. K.S Mehra, IAS and the Chief Secretary, Government of Delhi Government, Mr. Rakesh Mehta, IAS- the street dogs living in and around the venues earmarked for the Commonwealth Games, 2010- have got a reprieve and in the process India has set an example in front of the other countries of the world with regard to humane treatment of street animals and has also in the process respected its own laws and India’s constitution.

Now the task of picking them up and looking after them till the period of the Games has been entrusted into the hands of SPCA Noida, Cure n Care, Sonadi Animal Care Hospital Friendicoes SECA, an NGO based out of South Delhi, who will be housing them at their South Delhi, Ghazipur and Gurgaon centres where each dog will be given a token with details of the area from where it was picked up.

Volunteers and food are invited by all these NGOs to help in tagging and feeding of the dogs coming in every day and also for helping release them back into their respective territories after the games get over. However, please remember to contact these respective shelters prior to going in there (The contact numbers of all these shelters can be accessed here).

In the interim period, if these dogs will are sterilized and vaccinated by the NGO, then that would be an added bonus for these dogs and the city.

Click on the thumbnails below to read the communication issued by Animal Welfare Board of India’s Chairperson to the Commissioner, Municipal Corporation of Delhi (MCD):

Below is the news in today’s Times of India with regard to this initiative and here is the link to today’s online news on this subject.

Posted in Animals, Games people play, General/Animals

Animal ‘abuse’

(Courtesy: http://www.pixton.com)

How many times do people amongst us take names of an animal or refer to one in the abusive/bad language they utter (mostly without thinking) in one’s frequent bouts of anger?

These bad words could be in English or Hindi..Wondering what are we referring to here, think about these ‘ullu ka patha‘ (son of an owl) ‘kutte kamine‘, (rascal dog)  ‘suyar ki aulad‘ (child of a pig) or  English phrases like ‘looking sheepish‘ or ‘Quit horsing around!’

Ponder a second, do these words or phrases even mean anything?

Like us even Farhan Akhtar, the multitasking young bollywood director-actor-singer finds such bad-phrase- referrals to animals in our language meaningless.

For more on his take, read on:

Such an animal!

By Farhan Akhtar in HT City on 7th March, 2010

I wonder what animals ever did to the human race for us to have treated them in this manner. I refer here to the use, or rather, misuse of the species in the English language. I list here the top five violations to highlight my cause.

What does it mean when one says, ‘That guy really gets my goat!”? For years, I have heard about this fictional kid- napping from people who own as many goats as the acres of land I own on Saturn. So are we to assume that all of us own imaginary goats that get taken from us by annoying people? If you answered yes, I advise you consult the nearest shrink.

Another one, “No point in looking sheepish.” Now that’s a racial slur, if I ever heard one. Is it the sheep’s fault? And how can a person look like a sheep?
I ask this regardless of circum- stances!! Do we suddenly sprout wool when we feel guilty? Do we start eating leaves? Then why? The gentle creature is so fed up with this misrepresentation of its personality, that it now treats us with contempt….. Bah!!!

How about “Don’t trust him! He’s a snake!!” Now either the commenter has watched too many films about Ichhaadhaari Naag or then the commentee (to coin a word) slithers in and out of people’s homes and lives on a tree or in the ground! And what’s not to trust about a snake? Don’t mess with it, it leaves you alone. Mess with it and it will most likely kill you. Uncomplicated, if you ask me.

While on this, I must state that more people die annually of mosquito bites than snake bites but would it fill your heart with dread if someone warned you “Keep you eyes on that one… he’s a mosquito!!”?

“You’re being such a dog!! (male or female). This one really confuses me because we’ve been taught that dogs are loyal and friendly. We’ve read true stories about brave canines rescuing their masters from the jaws of death. Then why this complete reversal in the meaning? The only answer can be jealousy. An experiment conducted by someone who owned imaginary goats, revealed that when a dog and its master are in residence and guests come over, the dog gets approximately 75% of their attention. I hope you didn’t buy that theory because it wasn’t for sale. Like I said, this one really confuses me.

And finally my favorite. “Quit horsing around!” This is an old one though. Gone are the days when people wore saddles and took part in dressage. In the modern era, horsing around is described as ‘indulging in frivolous activity’. Do you suppose when a horse sees a person swinging a stick at a circular object, he thinks it frivolous and does not realize the importance of cricket as a national obsession! Goes to show how one species’ passion could be another’s frivolity.

I end this column on a hopeful note. I feel even now, people can restore faith in the hearts of the very creatures they’ve maligned over the years. The reason i know this is because we created a loophole in the same language….It’s human to make a mistake.

Now if we could only get those animals to start reading…

(Courtesy: htcity.desimartini.com)

Posted in Against Animal Cruelty, Animal Laws of India, Animals, Be the Change, Information that empowers!, Take Action!, Videos on Animals

For reporting animal cruelty cases: How to approach the police for help?

What comprises Animal Cruelty?

Contacting the Police on the Phone:
In an emergency situation telephone your local police station or dial 100 (Central Police Control Room) Get your “Ticket number” if you have dialled 100. Get the name and designation of the police personnel if you have called your local police station. Note the date and time on both occasions. If you wish to remain anonymous you do not need to reveal your identity.

At the Police Station:
i) Approach the police (above the rank of constable) politely and briefly explain the situation.

ii) Request them to take action against the offender.

iii) If they state it is not their job to protect animals as there are far too many human problems, politely enlighten them about their role in the PCA Act, 1960 (quote the relevant sections). If in Delhi, do tell them about the Delhi Police Act, 1978 Chapter IX entitled “the Prevention of Cruelty to animal”.

iv) Refer to http://awbi.org/awbi-pdf/apl.pdf for a compendium/factsheet of Animal Protection laws for the guidance of Police, NGOs, Animal Welfare Activists and Officers.

v) Insist on their involvement and offer your help.

vi) Inform them that the injured or distressed animal shelter and not left at the police station. This will reassure them.

vii) File an FIR if necessary.

viii) Do the necessary follow up.

ix) Do praise him/her after his involvement, no matter how small.

HOW TO FILE AN F.I.R. (FIRST INFORMATION REPORT):

• FIRs are filed at your local police station when you wish to put down in record an incident which you wish to bring to the notice of your local police and at the same time seek their help in solving it. (eg. loss of wallet, train ticket, incident, or any other loss).

• Make out a detailed description of the lost animal/incident with a photograph/s (or any cruelty complaint). Address it: to the SHO (Station House Officer), of your area.

• To file an FIR, write the facts on a plain piece of paper which you yourself may prepare in duplicate, with the date, your name and address, details of the complaint and the people involved, if any.

• The officer on duty at the police station is responsible for making all the necessary entries.

• The copy of the FIR should be duly signed, stamped and dated (note the time as well) by the police station which you should keep safely.

• This is applicable not only to lost animals, but to any animal you have found (which might be lost), cruelty to animals, illegal activities with regard to animals eg. trade in wildlife-bird sellers, snake charmers, turtle traders; illegal slaughtering of animals and illegal slaughter houses; bird sellers; cruelty to animals in zoos; circuses, pets/petshops etc.

• The Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act, 1960 under section 11 covers a large number of cruelties and offences on the basis of which you could file FIRs.

• Insist on filing an FIR. It is your right. It is important to note that the police usually discourage the complainant from registering a FIR in cases which are not so clear. This is because once the FIR is filed, it becomes the responsibility of the police to ensure a conviction.

• Do not lose the stamped copy (by the officers on duty) of the FIR and keep enquiring about the progress. This copy is the proof that the Police have received the information.

• Please don’t forget about the well-being of the animals, make sure that you also contact an Animal Welfare Organization/activists to ensure that they follow up on the health status, rehabilitation/release of the animals in case custody.

Please share  with us your experiences while dealing with the Police /lodging an F.I.R on animal cases, practical learnings end up being different than what we write here, so please be candid in your sharing for it may help someone at a later date when stuck in a similar situation. Thanks-Vasudha

Posted in Animals, General/Animals, Man and Animal: Stories of Kindness, Relationships, Videos on Animals

Intelligent Animals: Meet the thirsty cow operating a hand pump

Each one of us would have heard the story of the thirsty crow who brings pebbles in his beak and throws them in a pot to raise the level of water in there so that he can sip it and quench his thirst…

(Cortesy: indif.com)

Now, in this real life story, we meet a thirsty cow on a Delhi road.

Below is an amazing account of Rishi Dev’s encounter with a thirsty cow operating a hand pump to quench her thirst on the hot summer afternoon of 20th June, 2010

Animals continue to amaze me with the level of intelligence they possess which is beyond our comprehension. Another example of it was displayed to me today when I was just driving through a village. It was hot as ever and I saw a cow trying to drink water from a handpump on the village road. First I thought she was trying to lick away water which was dropping from the pump. So I stopped to see what was going on.

To my amazement, she was operating the hand-pump with her horns and then drinking water at the same time. She was using her head to push down the lever and when water flowed through the spout, she drank that water and kept repeating the exercise. I shot a small video before doing anything. It can be viewed below :

After that I just walked over to her and stood there, very near to the pump. Then she stopped drinking and for a second the people watching thought that she would attack me. But to their amazement she looked straight into me eyes questioning me not to stand there like a fool and use my limbs to operate the pump so she can drink. That one moment between us was unspoken and as if she had an unwarranted right over me, that I was bound by some universal love to help her. It was so obvious for her that there was not an iota of hesitation or doubt that she had any other intention. She hadnt asked me, but was teling me to operate that pump, NOW!

So I started operating the pump.

प्यासे को पानी पिलाओ और पुण्य कमायो

She must have drunk at least 50-100 lts of water as I stood there for real 20 minutes operating the pump while she was drinking the water, non stop. When she was done she looked at me in satiation and contentment as if asking me to stop. First she closed her eyes for 15 seconds catching her breath. Then she looked at me straight and flipped her delicate ears with an expression as if showering her divine motherly love upon me. I really felt I was standing next to a mother and not an animal. She had so much love in her eyes that I felt I had actually drunk all that water on this hot afternoon and not her.

We both went our ways without greeting each other, but only sharing some short but real moments of love.

Even though I was a bit amazed by her intelligence but she was least touched or surprised by my involvement as if telling me & reminding me yet again that it was nothing else but “obvious” that all beings had equal right to water, food and shelter and it was our obvious duty to help each other with the same. Nothing great !

गर्मियां बहुत बड़ गईं है जनाब, इसलिए इन प्यासे पशु-पक्षियों की तरफ थोड़ी सहानुभूति दिखाओ,

घर के बाहर एक साफ़ बर्तन में सुबह शाम पानी रखकर इनकी प्यास भुजाओ और पुण्य कमाओ

Posted in General/Animals, Man and Animal: Stories of Kindness, Relationships

Saying goodbye to your animal friend…and the essence of a dog’s life

Until one has loved an animal, a part of one’s soul remains unawakened”- Anatole France (1844-1924)

Ask anyone who has ever shared his life with an animal friend, and they will vouch for the fact that the most difficult phase in one’s  life is often the loss of your special animal friend. The loss is irreplaceable to say the least, the void of their love and presence is too big to be filled ever.

It is simply so hard to bid good-bye to our faithful special animal companions who have filled our lives with so much joy, blessed us with their unconditional love no matter how we are or how we look, thin or fat, ugly or beautiful, interesting or bland and the list goes on..they never judged us and thats what made them so very special. They teach us lessons that stay with us for life… and after they pass away, the only way by which we can pay their souls a just tribute is by spreading love, kindness and compassion that they gave you to other animals and humans alike and become as wonderful a person as your animal friend thought of you to be.

This link is for those who have like me suffered the emotional trauma of losing a beloved animal. May be these words by Dr. Linda Harper will provide comfort to an aching soul seeking solace after the loss of their beloved animal companion. Dr. Harper is also director of Blessed Bonds.

Dogs invented Unconditional Love

We came across this story by an unknown veterinarian and found it apt to share through this platform, it highlights the essence of the life of the dog, the most faithful companion nature created for humans…

Essence of a Dog’s Life

By an anonymous veterinarian

Being a veterinarian, I had been called to examine a ten-year-old Irish Wolfhound named Belker. The dog’s owners, Ron, his wife Lisa, and their little boy Shane, were all very attached to Belker, and they were hoping for a miracle. I examined Belker and found he was dying of cancer. I told the family we couldn’t do anything for Belker, and offered to perform the euthanasia procedure for the old dog in their home. As we made arrangements, Ron and Lisa told me they thought it would be good for six-year-old Shane to observe the procedure. They felt as though Shane might learn something from the experience.

The next day, I felt the familiar catch in my throat as Belker ‘s family surrounded him. Shane seemed so calm, petting the old dog for the last time, that I wondered if he understood what was going on. Within a few minutes, Belker slipped peacefully away.

The little boy seemed to accept Belker’s transition without any difficulty or confusion. We sat together for a while after Belker’s Death, wondering aloud about the sad fact that animal lives are shorter than human lives.

Shane, who had been listening quietly, piped up, ”I know why.”

Startled, we all turned to him. What came out of his mouth next stunned me. I’d never heard a more comforting explanation. It has changed the way I try to live.

He said,”People are born so that they can learn how to live a good life — like loving everybody all the time and being nice, right?” The Six-year-old continued, ”Well, dogs already know how to do that, so they don’t have to stay as long.”

Live simply.

Love generously.

Speak kindly.

Care deeply.