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Consequences of Stray Dogs Overpopulation in Bali

Bali is closely linked to the beautiful scenery and the stray dogs loitering around to relish beside the comforting, gushing ocean waves. Ironically, Bali has relatively high numbers of dogs and has exceeded the population limit. 

Stray dogs in Bali via michaelbrewerphotos.photoshelter.com

 

According to the head of the Disease Eradication and Environmental Health Division (P2PL), the Provincial Health Office of Bali, Gede Wira Sunetra, stated that there are 500,000 wild dogs in Bali which the number increases 3% annually. Some locations that have the highest number of stray dogs include Sukawati, Blahbatuh, Tegalalang, Gianyar, Tampaksiring.

 

Based on the data from the Disease Eradication and Environmental Health Division at the Bali Provincial Health Office in 2018, it is estimated that there are around 500,000 wild dogs in Bali. At the same time, the population of Balinese is approximately 4.2 million. With that, the comparison between Balinese and stray dogs creates a ratio of 8.2

Kintamani dog via hindu.web.id

 

The rate is quite high compared to other countries. According to data from Statistica, America has a total, 89.7 million, of dog population with 327.14 million Americans. So, the ratio of human and dog is only 3.6. The high ratio indicates the population explosion among stray dogs in Bali. 

 

Following Gede Nata Kesuma as the head of the Animal Health Division claimed that the elimination method was one of five strategies to control the explosion of the dog population. Before implementing the elimination method, it is better to apply the four steps, namely socialization, vaccination, traffic control, and population control. 

 

But the elimination method is the most frequently used technique to overpower the blowing up of stray dogs population. Until now, dog elimination is still taking place in Buleleng Regency because there has emerged conflicts between a considerable amount of dogs and natives. But, the most common and dangerous risk is the transmission of the rabies virus. 

 

Gianyar Regency is popular for a large number of dog bites. There are almost 70.000 dogs around Gianyar. People usually throw stray animals in the shrubs, markets, landfills, or even worse, highway. 

 

Head of Animal Husbandry Department of Gianyar Regency, Ngakan Readi, admitted that dog bites cases happened every day. Responding to this statement, head of Agriculture Office, I Made Raka, explained that rabies in Gianyar could not be diminished to zero cases like in Denpasar and Klungkung. Many dog owners do not initiate to be enrolled in the socialization and take their dogs to the Office of Agriculture to receive vaccines and sterile.

Photo via Tribun Bali

 

The elimination practice receives criticism from various sides. This mass elimination of stray dogs has brought to the attention of international NGOs. Said Ellt Hiby, Head of Companion Animal Programme World Society for The Protection of Animal  (WSPA), an international conference about rabies discussed the dangerous disease, rabies, in Bali. 

 

Slaughtering stray dogs is quite alarming if carried out continuously. Non-governmental organizations (NGOs) criticizes the mass killing programmed by the government of Bali to deal with the transmission of rabies. They evaluate how ineffective the solution is, especially by victimizing thousands of innocent dogs. 

 

Some people admit having an uneasy feeling because their dogs become the victim of the unethical action despite having vaccinated. The elimination method is also considered to be an inhumane and wrong solution since it does not address the root of the increase in stray dogs. Most of the dogs living on the street are not yet sterile. Not to mention, it is not uncommon to find cases of puppies intentionally thrown in the bush which lead them to become stray dogs. 

 

Stray dogs, raised in unhealthy, dirty environments are prone to rabies as they stray with other rabid dogs. Activities in the form of education, management of the dog population through dog registration and sterilization, as well as fast response to victims of dog bites must be executed consistently and sustainably by the central government, local government, and collaboration with non-governmental organizations. 



Stray dogs in Bali Photo via Kompasiana

 

Balinese people adhere to Hindu beliefs, and Balinese dogs are respected creatures. Their beliefs teach them that it is strictly forbidden to kill living beings. A pendada or leader of Hindu religious rituals stated that dead dogs must undertake traditional ceremonies. To begin with, the existence of dogs is helpful to humans because they are sensitive to threats around owners and homes. 

 

But the saddening fact dismantles the truth that every single stray dog has its own home and owner. As many as 85 percents of owners deliberately leave their dogs alone, abandoning them on the streets by which most of the stray dogs have not been given proper vaccines and sterilization. 

Stray dog in Bali via dailymail.com

 

It is worth mentioning that Balinese people are not accustomed to taking care of and caging dogs inside the house. In their custom, dogs are supposed to roam around. But because dogs are not sterile yet, this causes the explosion of the dog population. Dogs left on the streets without enough care, and vaccines will make them vulnerable to various diseases, especially rabies. In 2018, there were 70,000 stray dogs in Gianyar. There were 64.2% successfully-vaccinated stray dogs, while the number of stray dogs continues to escalate. 

 

Those stray dogs do not want to depend on their lives, begging for leftovers and sleeping under the roofless space. There is nothing wrong to give them the opportunity to feel affection, so their lives do not end in the hands of ruthless people. Let’s help by adopting abandoned dogs to get a new home via the free Adopsi app. 

 

Through Adopsi app, prospective adopters can get complete information of the dog or the adoptee. Adopsi app wants to be the bridge that brings together prospective adopters and abandoned dogs without forgetting to prioritize the safety and comfort of each party.  Stray dogs that are ready to be adopted are confirmed to pass the shelter’s health regulation. 

 

The shelter has vaccinated, microchipped, and even sterile if needed. Choosing to adopt an abandoned dog is the right thing to do because not only you help them, but you also help the shelter and activists in taking care of stray dogs, sent to the overpopulated shelter. 

 

Adopting stray animals is not as easy as expected because it requires readiness and commitment. For those of you who have not been able to adopt animals, but you can be part to save them by donating. Currently, Adopsi App is still on progress and improving its features to be more compatible and user-friendly. Find out our mission!

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