Islamabad gets Pakistan’s first Stray Dog Centre

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Abandoned dogs are fed, sheltered and medically treated at the newly-opened facility

Zubair Qureshi

Pakistan’s first-ever ‘Stray Dogs Population Control Centre’ has started functioning in the federal capital with a capacity of sheltering, feeding around 500 dogs. So far around 70 dogs have been brought by the teams of the dog centre, majority of them are those abandoned by owners or small puppies.

The centre has been set up in accordance with the directions of the Islamabad High Court (IHC) and guidelines of the animal rights organizations.

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At the recently inaugurated stray dogs population control centre, arrangements have been made to provide different facilities like playing, resting and medical examination/treatment to canines, etc. “We were working on the plan for some time as we were directed by the courts not to poison or shoot the stray dogs. Fortunately, we found a vacant piece of land that belongs to the Islamabad Capital Territory Livestock department,” said Shah Jahan Director General (Civic Management) CDA.

On the land now there stands the dog shelter house and the number is constantly growing, said Shah Jahan.Capital Development Authority (CDA) Chairman Captain (R) Muhammad Usman Younis inaugurated the Stray Dogs Population Control Centre and since then two vehicles of the centre are busy in bringing the canines to the centre from various corners of Islamabad.

The dog centre has a lab also for the purpose of carrying out various tests and vaccination of the canines. About their food, an official of the dog centre said earlier it was arranged that left-over food from the city’s restaurants would be provided to them.

However, after the animal rights activists disapproved that the left-over food might have onions and other ingredients that could prove dangerous for the dogs, the idea was dropped. Now instead of the left-over meat fresh meat is arranged from the local butchers and poultry farms and they are not charging for this good cause.

Of late, we had been receiving complaints about stray dog bites from different areas of Islamabad, especially the rural areas, he said. The issue was not addressed properly due to the absence of an effective mechanism to deal with these dogs, he said. However after this centre has been established hopefully we shall address this issue once for all.

 

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