Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Petpositive Condemns The Shooting Of Dogs In Penang

A stray dog in Petaling Jaya

PETPOSITIVE condemns the shooting of stray dogs in Penang.

This should NEVER be done to animals on the streets or in private, away from the public eye.

The Penang local council (MPPP) should instead put down unwanted dogs humanely, that is, through a lethal injection. This should be done only by a veterinarian or a trained veterinary officer. 

The MPPP should work closely on this with the Department of Veterinary Services in Penang.

Thanasayan and Zhar

Petpositive President Anthony SB Thanasayan who is also a councillor for the Petaling Jaya City Council (MBPJ) contacted an official with MPPP this morning to offer help to the local council in dealing with strays more effectively.

He also suggested that MPPP should work with animal groups. His suggestion was well received.

Thanasayan who is also Chairman of the Canine Advisory Teams of MBPJ and the Klang munipality (MPK) extended an invitation to the MPPP to visit Petaling Jaya and Klang in Selangor to see how both councils were dealing with the issue of stray animals.

MBPJ's CAT team in action

The MPPP has no dog pound. They are constantly inundated with complaints of stray dogs in the island, they said.

Here is a story in today's The Star:     

Wednesday May 25, 2011

Strays allegedly caught and shot in full view of children


RESIDENTS who witnessed an alleged open-shooting of stray dogs by the Penang Municipal Council (MPPP) have expressed shock and disgust over the inhumane act.
Inhuman method: File photos of stray dogs being chased, trapped and shot during a local council operation to reduce the stray population in housing areas

The shooting was said to have been carried out in residential areas and in the midst of children who were walking to a nearby kindergarten.

The residents are now urging the council and the Penang government to review the method used to dispose off the strays because open-shooting could pose a danger to the public.
Inhuman method: File photos of stray dogs being chased, trapped and shot during a local council operation to reduce the stray population in housing areas

A witness to the incident who wants to be known only as Rowe, said that of late, there were many strays roaming at Sunway Mutiara in Batu Maung but the animals did not cause any harm to anyone.
She said that she saw a few council workers shooting the dogs in her neighbourhood a few days ago, leaving behind “a trail of blood.”

“When they arrived, the dogs were sleeping under cars parked outside the houses here. They lured one of the dogs out, wrestled it to the ground and shot it several times in its head despite the dog not behaving aggressively,” she said.
Inhuman method: File photos of stray dogs being chased, trapped and shot during a local council operation to reduce the stray population in housing areas

Another resident, who wished to be known as Shu, a homemaker, said her three young children had witnessed the brutal slaying and they were now traumatised by the incident.

“What if the bullets had gone astray? The children could have been harmed,” she said.
American Sarah Rinkenberger, 32, who resides in the same area, said she was not at home during the shooting but she learnt about it from neighbours.

“I’m surprised such a method is still being used in this country. Back in America, strays are caught and sent to the pound but they are never shot in the open,” she said.
Rinkenberger, who helps to manage a language centre here with her husband, said it was her personal belief that God created both humans and animals, therefore dogs must be treated in a good way.
Peace shattered: Rinkenberger watching over her children playing in front of her house in Sunway Mutiara, Batu Maung, where the shooting of stray dogs has allegedly taken place recently

A spokesperson from the MPPP’s Urban Services, Public Health and Licensing Department denied that the council had shot the stray dogs in such a manner.

However, the spokesperson said that shooting would be carried out if there was no other way.
“We are trying to use humane methods such as tranquillisers and we have applied for licensing from the police last year but we have yet to hear from them,” the spokesperson said, stressing that the department would only act based on complaints from the public.

A non-governmental organisation called Malaysian Dogs Deserve Better (MDDB) Penang coordinator Chuah Kok Han said the alleged shooting should not be justified by any party.

“It is wrong to use such a method to cull animals. MPPP must stop doing this and the state Veterinary Services Department must ensure that it is stopped immediately,” said Chuah.

He added that nowadays most people no longer tolerate cruelty towards dogs.

“We are a civilised society and we expect relevant authorities such as the local councils to behave in a civilised manner when it comes to handling animal-related issues,’’ said Chuah.

Chuah also said that MDDB Penang plans to meet Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng over the issue.
Children’s Protection Society Penang secretary Magdeline Ng-Leong said the safety of children should not be compromised under whatever circumstances.

“The council should use other methods instead of openly shooting the strays in the presence of children.”

Penang Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (SPCA) administrator Lily Leng said that stray dogs should not be destroyed in full view of the public.

“We received endless complaints about dogs being shot in public and I think there should be other ways to handle stray dogs instead of shooting them openly.

“Not only is it dangerous, the whole ordeal is disturbing and heart-wrenching to watch. Strays should be put down in private and not in the open,” she said.
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Anonymous said...

very true indeed. this shooting also happen recently in the vicinity of my apartment block at bukit tengah (bukit mertajam). imagine kids looking out the window and watch in horror how those dogs being shot. my wife cant even want to vomit seeing the dogs being dragged, tied up to a lamp post and shot at.
tony k

Romulos said...

Hello Mr.Anthony,

The shooting of strays is very much still practiced by many councils throughout Malaysia and it should stop.

But that's not the reason I'm showing up here. Finally huh!
I want to ask you a question since you also write for the newspaper that printed the Penang story.

My question is, if the story is about the Majlis shooting the dogs in Penang, why are they printing file pictures from April 2006 of the RSPCA UK using pole nets and freeman leashes to capture strays?

The RSPCA also demonstrated the use of the "CASH SPECIAL" Captive Bolt Gun as an option for putting dogs down. Although I don't agree with this method, it's still accepted as humane because of the instant death.

There's also a sentence below all the photos that says "Inhuman method: File photos of stray dogs being chased, trapped and shot during a local council operation to reduce the stray population in housing areas"

I find these pictures and statements very misleading to the public because according to international humane guidelines for capture, although these methods and equipments should only be used as a last resort, they are methods that are considered humane!

Could you help rectify the matter with the newspaper?


Stray Animal Management Consultant