Pet abandonment and cruelty rises in Manipal2 min read
Manipal: The treatment of dogs, stray or otherwise, in Manipal is a point of contention among many due to reports of abuse, neglect, and abandonment.
Dr. Shubha Geetha, a doctor in Sonia clinic, has been running an adoption program for dogs and cats out of her home since July 2007 and has seen several cases of animal abuse and neglect. “They’re beaten up and all, I’ve seen so many people do it. And some of them are kept in very small cages or are kept locked up in the room.” The adoption process in her Trust is extensive and requires the potential pet owner to leave their name, address, phone number and an agreement to do a follow up. They also have to make sure that their pet is vaccinated and neutered.
However, she strongly disapproves of college students owning pets. “I think there should be a rule that students should not be allowed to keep pets, because when they go they leave the dog on the street.” she explained “They cannot survive on the street because they will be attacked by the other animals.” she added.
There have been quite a number of cases of abandonment in Manipal. Students often pick up dogs off the streets, only to later abandon them when they finish their studies. Many people also don’t realise the amount of work involved in taking care of a dog. ACT Mangalore, an animal shelter in Shaktinagar, Mangalore, takes in animals that have been abandoned when their owners could no longer care for them. “We sometimes find puppies and kittens that don’t even have their eyes open yet, just dumped in a dustbin.” explained a volunteer. ACT Mangalore cares for 200 to 250 animals, all strays or abandoned.
In an effort to reduce the stray dog population, the Udupi municipality has implemented an Animal Birth Control (ABC) programme. The ABC programme requires the municipal dog catchers to catch stray dogs and take them to a local veterinary hospital to be neutered or spayed. Once the operation is complete, the dog is sterile for life. They keep the dog for three days and then release it back to the place where it was found. Neutered dogs can be distinguished by their clipped ears. Dr. Geetha’s trust and ACT Mangalore have birth control programmes for dogs as well.
Edited by Sakhi Todi