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Stop this anti-dog madness, oh Malaysia!

We need more compassionate solutions to the problem of stray animals, whether they are dogs or cats


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Once again, we are struck to the marrow over the recent news of dog catchers on the beat. This time, a pet owner died as he struggled with adamant dog catchers. 

Not too long ago, we read of another pet owner who was brutally hurt and who was eventually charged in court for preventing municipal officers from discharging their duty.

The irony is that the ‘duty’ of catching dogs has nothing to do with bodily combat out of a duty to defend the country’s security and peace. Yet, it has entailed bodily harm, injuries and even death.

In the most recent incident, a senior citizen died in Bentong, Pahang! I wonder if he too could be posthumously charged with interfering with the duties of civil officers? 

Seriously, what is this madness plaguing the nation? 

Is there no better, safer and a more compassionate and responsible way to deal with stray dogs? Why do these officers barge into homes and neighbourhoods to snare dogs that clearly have owners taking care of them? 

If the claim is to prevent a rabies outbreak in the country, then why are cats allowed to roam and multiply freely in almost every neighbourhood in the country? Are cats not responsible for the spread of zoonotic diseases? 

Cats that do not have ‘licences’ and have no accountable keepers do not appear to be in the crosshairs of the authorities. Enforcement personnel only seem to out to target and nab every dog in sight. At least, that seems to be the perception among animal lovers.

READ MORE:  Concerns of society critical when keeping pets, feeding stray animals

Despite all the protests raised repeatedly by animal rights activists and NGOs, we do not see any improvement in the way municipal councils monitor and manage their dog-catching units. 

The public is outraged by the news of this senior citizen’s uncalled for death as he attempted to protect his pet dog. 

This cannot go on without a national redress. If it does, then the meaning of “Malaysia Madani” (Civil Malaysia) as a panacea to rid the nation of its many evils and make the people more compassionate will end up a total flop. 

We need more compassionate solutions to the problem of stray animals, whether they are dogs or cats.

When we cause the death of a human being because of our obsession to be rid of stray dogs, then surely, we have to review the practices that caused that death.

The views expressed in Aliran's media statements and the NGO statements we have endorsed reflect Aliran's official stand. Views and opinions expressed in other pieces published here do not necessarily reflect Aliran's official position.

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4 Aug 2023 1.54pm

Dogs are lovely animals. But pls keep them as your pets. It’s only fair to them. Don’t allow the dogs you feed to roam around neighbourhoods and get into trouble chasing after kids or bicycles. That’s how reports are started. You are to blame for your dogs or strays you feed getting into trouble.

May Lee Chai
May Lee Chai
31 May 2023 11.35pm

If I’m not mistaken, {many] Muslims hate dogs as they were taught from young that dogs are dirty. Although many Muslims in other countries do not view touching dogs as forbidden, conservative Islamic groups here say the Shafie school of Islamic jurisprudence that they follow views dogs as unclean and requires the faithful to undergo a ritualistic wash if they come into contact with canines.

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