View the world through the eyes of Hudson. His objective of this blog is to educate the public by trying to teach them not to buy a dog through a puppy mill. Don't buy a dog before you see where his parents live and how they are treated. Better yet ADOPT through a rescue or shelter and know you've done a good deed by saving a dog's life !!!
Thursday, June 25, 2015
Abandoned pet dogs double on city streets By:Mithila Phadke
MUMBAI: Lucky is about 2-years old, with a shiny coat of brown, black and white. A Husky-stray mix, he's resident livewire, and adopted sibling to serene Misha, and the very glamorous Velvet. Watching him and Velvet wrestle across the floor for the better part of an hour, it's hard to imagine a time he ever sat still. Or had two broken hind legs, severely scabbed ears, and was so covered with ticks that Nina Joshi could barely see the white markings on his face when she found him.
"He was lying on the pavement outside -malnourished and half-dead," recalls Joshi, who adopted Lucky a year and a half ago. "And look at him now."
Joshi runs a pet supplies store in Matunga, but the better part of her day is often spent rescuing and finding homes for dogs abandoned on Mumbai's streets by their owners. Her cell phone buzzes constantly with calls from neighbourhood residents about pups dumped in dustbins, dogs left tied outside agiarys in the pouring rain, and those lying on the side of the road, after having been hit by a passing car. "There are so many that get abandoned every single day," Joshi says. "People buy a dog, realise it requires more care and expenses than they can handle, and promptly get rid of it."
Until two years ago, animal NGOs rescued about 2 to 3 dogs abandoned on the streets each week. The numbers of orphaned dogs have multiplied since.
"We frequently find as many as 8 to ten abandoned dogs now," says Pooja Sakpal, co-founder of Youth Organization in Defence of Animals (YODA). This includes foreign breeds like German Shepherds, Pomeranians, and even Huskies and Saint Bernards—that Mumbai had recently taken a great fancy to. From those as young as a month-and-a-half old to the elderly canines, they are open prey for infections and illegal breeders.
With greater disposable income and easy availability of dogs-especially foreign breeds—in the market, the number of dogs being bought has grown considerably in the two years. A Euromonitor report pegged the number of Indian households with pet dogs at 12 million last year -a leap from 7 million in 2009. The numbers of those abandoned have kept pace. Dogs are bought or adopted on a whim, and owners soon realise the pet requires much more care than previously assumed. "It has never been easier to get a dog," says Sakpal. "There are so many kennels, and if you want to buy one, you get them at places like Crawford Market for a few thousand rupees. They are caged and live in terrible conditions but the buyers don't care." Lab puppies—crammed five to a cage—sell for as little as Rs 1,000. "Toy breeds" like Lhasa Apsos are Rs 10-12,000, while prices for Saint Bernards and Siberian Huskies hover between Rs 40,000- 80,000. The dogs can be ordered and taken home in less than a week.
Because Labradors and Pomeranians are the cheapest, they are the most frequently bought and consequently, most often abandoned. At the Welfare of Stray Dogs kennels, it's customary to find at least two rescued Pomeranians at any given time, says CEO Abodh Aras. But as expenses for "prestige" dogs like German Shepherds, Huskies and Saint Bernards mount, owners don't always hesitate before getting rid of them either, says Rinky Karmarkar from Save our Strays NGO.
"Siberian Huskies, for instance, are supposed to live in snowy regions," she says. "An air-conditioned room isn't a substitute." Dogs frequently fall sick and develop rashes during summers. "Some breeds shed a lot of hair, need a lot of room. As a pup grow up, it requires more care and that's when owners realize they have taken on too much responsibility," says Joshi. Moving into a new home after marriage where pets aren't welcome, relocating abroad, finding that a pet has grown old and isn't as "sprightly" as she used to be are other reasons. "I had a person who said the German Shepherd they adopted didn't act like the dog in a Bollywood from they had seen," Joshi recalls. "People abandon their pets for the stupidest of reasons."
Activists have been urging people to adopt instead of buying a pet, and also, ensuring they do their research beforehand. "It's a slow process though. People don't realize that they're taking responsibility for a living creature," says Sakpal. "It's a member of your family, not some vegetable you buy in the market."