Ways to Help Street Animals in a Pandemic
Let’s Spread Kindness
“Let’s spread kindness”
A) Be aware of all the dogs and cats in the neighbourhood.
A pandemic does not only affect people, also street animals are trying to survive without adequate food and shelter, so it is our job to look out for stray animals in our area during this crisis. Keep an eye on the count and if you can, set up a temporary shelter for the dogs, preferably somewhere isolated that won’t disturb your neighbours, or possibly in your compound.
B) Feed the innocent strays.
If there are stray dogs or cats in your building or neighbourhood, provide them with food such as rice, lentils, or meat chunks so they do not go hungry. We usually spend a lot of money on impulsive food orders. After sheltering them, this should be the next step. Not to forget, do ensure that they always have enough water to drink.
C) Extra care and nursing for pregnant dogs and cats as well as for kittens and puppies.
Pregnant and nursing dogs, as well as puppies, are more vulnerable than the rest of the pack. This should be the next area of concern, where you should devise more measures to help them.
A personal tip: Pups eat the same foods as their mothers. Set aside a larger bowl for liquids and paste-like foods and use the same bowl. This will not only keep the moms’ tummies full, but it will also keep the babies’ tummies full.
D) Set up a WhatsApp group or online platform for volunteer’s service
You can establish an online platform to find and list sponsors, and volunteers who can help with food donations and veterinary services for stray animals.
Moreover, make an online group with your friends in the locality to divide the responsibilities. You will not only maintain social and physical distance from each other, but you will also not deprive the strays. Be an inspiration!
E) Reach out get adoptions after lockdown
After the lockdown, upload pictures of the dogs on social media and look for people who genuinely want to adopt them. Connect with other online forums to encourage people to adopt street dogs rather than purchasing pricey breeds. Utilize social media to its full potential.
F) Investigate TNR (Trap, Neuter, Release) after lockdown
After the lockdown, discuss raising funds for the sterilization of the strays with your WhatsApp group or online platform where adoptions are not possible.
Discuss this with a local veterinarian (sterilization must be done at a vet clinic) to see what help they can offer. Contact a local animal shelter for advice.
Important to do this to prevent unwanted litters of puppies & kittens.
IMPORTANT INFORMATION BEFORE ADOPTION
What should one do before picking up a stray and bringing it home? Many people are oblivious to their obligations and responsibilities. Here’s some advice to consider before getting a pet:
1. Family permission is required. Always ask if everyone in the household is happy and able to commit for at least 10 years and beyond before adopting a stray home. Pets are normally not allowed in high rise buildings in Malaysia, therefore, residents should verify with their management.
2. Make an appointment with a veterinarian. If the family is agreeable to the adoption, the first thing you should do is take the pet to a veterinarian to have it dewormed and de-flead.
3. Be sure to get vaccines for them. First, ask the vet to check the gender of the pet because not everyone can tell the difference between a male and a female and also advise on the age. The next step is to have the animal vaccinated and determine when it can be neutered to avoid pet overpopulation. Vaccinations are required regularly to prevent the spread of diseases.
4. Get a licence for them. A licence is required for every dog over the age of three months, which may be obtained through your Majlis Bandaran. The licence must always be worn and not kept at home. This is to prevent the pet from becoming a stray once more. Dogs should be walked on a leash rather than being allowed to run free.