Thiruvananthapuram

NGOs come forward to do sterilisation of stray dogs

The City Corporation has held discussions with two city-based non-governmental organisations (NGOs) for joint implementation of the Suraksha animal birth-control project for sterilisation of stray dogs.

Considering the public demand for an efficient mechanism to address the problems posed by stray dogs, the Corporation has decided to seek the support of the NGOs for the implementation of the crippled project. Corporation officials said the final modalities for signing a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with the NGOs, one from Kovalam and another from Pettah, were under way.

“Initially, three agencies approached the Corporation for associating with the Suraksha project, of which one backed out because of the lack of a facility for sterilisation. The NGO from Kovalam, Animal Rescue Kerala (ARK), had come forward with a draft MoU which we have reviewed and sent back with changes,” said Corporation Health Officer D. Sreekumar.

The understanding reached between the Corporation and ARK is for sterilisation of dogs captured by the trained animal-handlers of the Corporation. The NGO will use its facility for sterilisation.

After sterilisation and post-operative care, the dogs will be handed back to the Corporation workers who will then release them in the locations from where they have been captured.

The civic body now has to reach an understanding on the payment of ARK's service charge.

Usually, the Animal Welfare Board of India provides a grant to NGOs for the programme at the rate of Rs.75 for capture and release of a stray dog and Rs.370 for sterilisation of a dog.

“However, ARK has asked the Corporation to give an initial advance for sterilisation as the grant from the Animal Welfare Board can be delayed for months. For this, the Corporation will first have to get approval from the State government,” Corporation Secretary K. Biju said.

The canine sterilisation mechanism of the Corporation continues to suffer from a lack of staff and experienced personnel. The number of animal-handlers under the Suraksha project has come down to two. Even the dogs captured by them have to be kept in the hospital animal shelter for days before being sterilised and released back. The two veterinary surgeons exclusively appointed for carrying out the sterilisation surgery have been transferred.

The laparoscopic equipment bought by the Corporation to speed up the sterilisation process is under-utilised without experienced staff.

“As of now, veterinary surgeons from other veterinary hospitals take turns to do the sterilisation surgery. Most of these doctors have to find time in between their regular duty to come here and then report back for duty. Unless we get vet surgeons exclusively for sterilisation, we will not be able to produce results as per the public demand,” K.S. Gopakumar, senior veterinary surgeon, said.


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Printable version | Jun 13, 2021 2:58:40 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Thiruvananthapuram/ngos-come-forward-to-do-sterilisation-of-stray-dogs/article2333224.ece

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