Tuesday, January 17, 2017

8 reasons why we should not rescue pagoda dogs and cats

The word of mouth says there are some foreign doctors in town treating pagoda cats and dogs. It was said that no privately owned animals are treated. I think this is a wrong approach. And I tell you why:

1. The reason why dogs and cats have huge litters is because most are supposed to die. That is how it works. Saving them means producing a lot of animals who are unfit for life and reproduction.

2. Let the fittest survive instead of saving the weakest. Locals usually wait a few weeks until they see what cat/dog will survive and keeping it as a pet.

3. By treating pagoda cats and dogs you are actually support the pagoda trade – what means people will continue bringing animals to this place, even if it wasn't meant to be a shelter.

4. Monks accept the animals, but they are a temple, not a animal shelter. Their religious belief  forces them to care but they do it only to still low extent.

5. Rescuing a cat/dog isn't just a one day treatment, but a life long commitment. You don't do that to make you feel good.

6. What is needed is changing habits of locals. You can't do that in a pagoda with foreigners. What is needed is a Khmer owned proper clinic and a Khmer owned proper pet care with dog/cat boarding. Have a look an neighboring countries like Thailand and Laos. The toy dog business (like them or not) made dogs and cats a pet that is accepted in the house - and an investment you care more about. So people start caring about their pets just because their peers do it.

7. Pagodas do not provide medical service. A one day event (beside spay and neuter) doesn't change anything. Money is better spend in supporting/setting up a local clinic with a qualified vet and proper equipment.

8. Siem Reap as any other places in Cambodia needs better equipment and better diagnostic tools for pet care. As long as you can't get blood tested here or an x-ray, those one-day events are useless.

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