Posted in Animals, Be the Change, General/Animals, Inspiration, Jaagruti's interventions, Man and Animal: Stories of Kindness, Medical treatment of Animals, Stories from Ground Zero, Street Dogs of India

The story of ‘Magic’ and his rescue

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

‘Magic’ in the ambulance post recovery and before being released back into his area -Day 40 (Image Copyright: ‘Jaagruti’)
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 Against Animal Cruelty, Animal Laws of India, Animals, Be the Change, Stories from Ground Zero, Street Dogs of India, Take Action!

Commonwealth Games and Street Dogs- Part 2

For a background or part 1 of this story on Commonwealth Games (Delhi, 2010) and street dogs, kindly click here and then read on below

On 5th October, 2010, the Animal Welfare Board of India wrote to the Municipal Corporation of Delhi to apprise them of the fact that the  Continued (temporary) removal of stray dogs by the municipal agencies from Commonwealth Games venues is turning out to be ‘COUNTER PRODUCTIVE’.

To understand how random displacement of street dogs can turn counter-productive, please read the letter from AWBI mentioned above by clicking on the image below:

Following this letter, a website ‘www.cwgdogs.in‘ has been launched to help find your missing/caught street Dogs during the Commonwealth Games ‘dog catching’ spree.

If you are one of those missing your friendly neighbourhood canine on the street – please identify them from the photographs posted on this website, contact these shelters and get them back to their homes for that is where they belong.

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.