TAMIL NADU

Love in action

Giving dogs a new home.

Giving dogs a new home.  

IT WAS a meeting of kind people, who were ready to go the extra mile to show it. At the eighth annual `Pet adoptathon' programme organised at the Velachery premises of Blue Cross, once more, pups which would otherwise have been out in the cold got new homes.

Mongrel puppies, collected from various parts of the city, were given in adoption during the programme. On the inaugural day, nearly 70 new borns including puppies, kitten and some adult dogs were taken in by city residents.

Between 120 and 130 puppies were given in adoption in the two days, says S.Raghavan, co-ordinator of the event. Last year, 120 puppies have found a new home, and the year before that, it was 115. ``The number increases every year and this is encouraging'', he says.

Originally, the programme was started in the U.S. where it is conducted in mid-May. But, here it is held in January for two reasons - ideal weather conditions and the observance of animal welfare fortnight this month, says Vasanthi Rajiv, a volunteer of the Blue Cross. Moreover, the heat of May and the summer holidays will not help the orphaned animals find a better home, she explains.

As the animal welfare organisation came to know that the adult pedigree pets such as German Shepherds and Doberman were mainly adopted for breeding, this time it informed those who wanted to adopt old pedigree pets that the handing over of the animals would be done only after sterilisation, Raghavan says.

For 11-year-old Nanditha S.Das, this is the second year as a volunteer in the organisation. She goes around with a pup, explaining to visitors how such a programme has been helping the cause of mongrel dogs. Inspired by Nanditha, her friend, Kaveri, volunteered this time despite being `afraid of dogs'.

It is not just the animal lovers from among the local residents who volunteer. There are animal welfare activists from abroad as well. Erik Bostrom and Hanna Swanberg from Sweden are part of the team. They say that as there are no `community' dogs in their country as in India, such adoption programmes do not exist.

It is not the dogs alone that have a special place in the scheme of things at Blue Cross. A separate programme, known as `Cat Sundays', is organised once a year for the cats also and it goes on for two weeks. No war of ``Cats and Dogs'' here, in real life !

By P. Oppili

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