The Punjab government has formulated a comprehensive policy for rehabilitation of stray dogs and it would be formally approved by the provincial cabinet, Punjab Chief Secretary Jawwad Rafique Malik.
“Under the policy, instead of killing stray dogs, alternative methods will be used for their birth control and they would also be trained and sold for security and screening purposes.”
The Punjab chief secretary was presiding over a meeting held to review the policy here on Friday.
Additional Chief Secretary Iram Bukhari, University of Veterinary and Animal Sciences (UVAS) Pro Vice-Chancellor Dr Masood Rabbani and officers of livestock, local government and law department attended the meeting.
Addressing the meeting, the Chief Secretary said that killing of stray dogs is by no mean the solution to the problem.
“Killing any living thing is a cruel act and is forbidden in our religion,” he mentioned. He said that the animal rights organizations also have concerns about the practice of killing dogs.
He said that under the policy, measures would be taken to neuter and vaccinate the stray dogs and livestock, local bodies and other concerned departments would work together in this regard.
He said that after providing training to stray dogs, they could be sold for security and screening purposes.
Additional Chief Secretary Iram Bukhari said that the Livestock Department and the Society for Prevention of Cruelty to Animals have formulated the policy in consultation with all stakeholders and an action plan has also been prepared for its implementation.
He said that a provincial steering committee would be set up at the provincial level in which the private sector would also be given representation while committees headed by deputy commissioners and assistant commissioners would be set up for implementation in districts and tehsils.
The services of organizations working for the protection of animal rights would also be utilized in the process of rehabilitation of dogs.
Dr Masood Rabbani, UVAS Pro Vice-Chancellor, told the meeting that so far about 300 officers and employees have been trained in policy implementation.
He said that the finance department has released funds of Rs74 million for vaccinating stray dogs against rabies.
He said that the staff working for the rehabilitation of stray dogs would also be vaccinated against rabies.