Friday, June 15, 2012

Cemetery Dogs - Oscar's Updates

HOPE Dog Rescue
Pets Wellness

Please join us at HOPE DOG RESCUE

After my encounter with Beano (read more here), I realised that there's so much to be done for animals and so much more in my own capacity that I can help out. I therefore, started to volunteer for HOPE Dog Rescue and my 1st assignment was to ferry Oscar to the vet for his follow-up consultation.

Oscar is a 6 month old stray puppy that stays in a cemetery (more about Oscar). HOPE came across him when they were carrying out their sterilization project there. Oscar is suffering from Dermodectic Mange and 2 of his siblings had already died a slow painful death from it. He is the only 1 out of the litter left now.

Meet little Oscar. He was so terrified the whole time I was there, he stayed almost motionless in the carrier.

His body is so raw and it's bleeding in some areas

My heart was heavy with despair while I edited these photos. It must be sheer torture for Oscar.
Oscar's little paw. Open sores cover parts of his body.

His skin is dry and crusted

I know HOPE had their hands full recently with Beano and Babu suffering from canine distemper. And on the night that I was sending Oscar to the vet, I learned that they were rushing a kitten, with an eye nearly popped out, to the vet too.

I am grateful to the kind people from HOPE for not giving up on these strays. An easy option would have been to put them to sleep because treatments are expensive. But they had never withheld treatment just because these are strays.

In addition to keeping Oscar, Beano and Babu in your prayers, I'm appealing to all to help in whatever way you can. If you have a car, perhaps you can volunteer to ferry the pets around. Or perhaps foster a dog.

Story and photographs by Esther Low.

Note from Fiona : Oscar has been warded at Mount Pleasant Animal Clinic (Bedok) since Tuesday as he was not eating, drinking and feeling rather down. He has been put on drip and will be discharged today (Friday). We thank Esther for fetching Oscar to and from the vet.

Oscar will be heading back to the kennel this evening. We thank kind sponsors for paying for his stay at the boarding kennel. We appeal to anyone who has some space at home to please foster Oscar, even if it's for just a few weeks. His skin needs constant cleaning and proper care. He is a young puppy and has been through so much. He has lost his two siblings, we can't afford to lose him as well.

Oscar has ringworms as well, so ideally the foster needs to be someone with no pets at home or to keep Oscar separated from their pets. To help, please sms / text Lily at 9880 6082.

Friday, May 4, 2012

Glue Traps: were glue traps created for efficiency or for our twisted entertainment?

Original Sources:

I never knew that glue could be so dangerous, look at the poor cat's expression. Glue traps are usually placed indoors for rodent control and pests caught on these boards are thrown away with the traps, leaving the trapped animal to suffer for days, subjected to starvation and dehydration.

Now I know how people don't like rodents and pests, but that is for sure a really inhuman way to get rid of them by letting them suffer for days. It just goes to show that human nature at its core is not very human at all.

According to the SPCA the cat was found in Blk 527 Jurong West Street 52, by people who had been feeding the cat on a regular basis. The cat was found to be caught in a glue-trap board about 4 by 5 feet in size which contained an excessive amount of glue. Imagine the distress the cat was in. 

The name of the company and amount fined was not revealed.  But AVA said that its investigation revealed that the firm was “not wholly responsible for the state of respiratory distress” that eventually led to the cat being put down by a vet from the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (SPCA). It went on to state on its Facebook page that: 
AVA has reviewed the use of glue traps with the National Environment Agency (NEA) which licenses pest control companies, and concluded that a ban on the use of glue traps could adversely impact the effective handling of rodent situations in Singapore. This could potentially result in hygiene and disease problems. Nonetheless, to ensure that non-target animals are not caught in glue traps, AVA and NEA have reviewed the existing guidelines on the use of such traps, and will be issuing a revised set of guidelines.

In its response on AVA’s Facebook page, SPCA added that its staff “did their best with what was available”. They had removed the cat from the glue board, placed it on a plastic bag and onto a pet carrier before transporting it to the clinic. 

There are a few issues I have with this scenario:
  1. Glue traps are inhuman period, for its intended targets or non-intended unfortunates. Imagine having to suffer for days before you actually die, of pain, stress, dehydration and agony. We, as humans are really creative, but I wonder were glue traps created for efficiency or for our twisted entertainment?
  2. Who in the world with enough common sense would put a cat covered in glue in a plastic bag? It obviously would aggravate the situation for the poor critter. And how was the plastic place on the cat for it to be totally covered in glue when it was only partially covered in glue from its legs, enough for it to have that expression. 
  3. Although the company involved did not kill the cat, it definitely caused the misfortune and SPCA just made it happen. Both parties are at fault.
  4. Is anyone bothered by the size of the glue trap used? I mean, for a cat to get caught in it when it is meant for rodents tells alot.
It's just sad that such things happen. And even sadder that no action is being taken to ban glue traps. Like I mentioned earlier were glue traps created for efficiency or for our own twisted entertainment?

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Taking Care of a Dog

Before deciding to get a dog, it would be best if a bit of research is done as it involves a lot of responsibility. You would need to know what breed of dog best suits your lifestyle, as well as the social, dietary and health-related needs of the dog you have chosen. There is also the training aspect when it comes to keeping dogs. A dog, which is not trained, can lead to unwanted situations and may even result in injury to others.

  • Puppy Care
  • Feeding
  • Grooming
  • Training
  • Exercise
  • Veterinary Care

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Where to get your dog

This is the one place in Singapore that houses so many dogs, and you get to keep them at no cost (not inclusive of medical fees), as long as you have the right environment for the dog. So many dogs are abandoned every year, and if you truly want a dog to keep you company and to care for, getting a dog from the SPCA not only helps the dogs, but also saves the SPCA the tiring and
inhumane operation of putting them to sleep as they simply have too many abandoned animals to care for.

People who have decided to get their dog from the SPCA have most probably gone through a careful thought process: wanting not only to enrich their lives but that of the dog which they will adopt.

More about the adoption process can be read here.

2) Pet shop
The first place that people look for a dog is at the pet shop. Not that it's wrong to get a puppy from the pet shop, but there are other dogs that need your care more. Getting a dog from a pet shop would only encourage the inhumane practice of dog breeding by inexperienced people
or those out to make a quick buck, not bothering about the health of the puppies and their mother. So if you plan to get your dog from the pet shop, make sure that you know the puppies' health history and the pet shop's credibility.

Having no prior knowledge in breeding dogs can result in disaster: the mother and/or the puppies may die during birth, and the health of the puppies' are compromised when the parents' health are not checked.

Just because 2 dogs of the same breed get together, the health of the puppies produced are not necessary good. Recklessly breeding dogs produces unwanted and probably unhealthy puppies; adding to the already overpopulated and pitiful abandoned dog population.

Majority of the people that buy puppies from pet shops just want that something that's cute and cuddly. Only to abandon them when they get too much to handle and beyond expectations. Not all but the majority. So please have a heart and think twice before you dive into the doggie world. You may also wish to consider the first option, adopting from the SPCA.

3) People who give away their dogs
Thee are people who, due to certain circumstances ate unable to look after their dog anymore and thus have to give them away. This is another way on which you can get a dog, from a friend, family members or a friend's friend.

When People Give Their Dogs Away

There are times when due to certain circumstances, people are forced to give away their dogs. Here are just some if the reasons I think are valid and others that are simply irresponsible. However, no matter what my opinions are, finding them a good home when you are no longer
able to care for them is better than simply ABANDONING them and hope that someone 'nice' picks them up.

Valid Reasons
1) Having have to move to another country or state. Then again in Singapore's context, since there is no other states, another country would suffice. Or if you happen to be downgrading from a landed property to a HDB flat.

2) A family member is sick and needs more attention and care.

Not Very Valid Reasons
1) Bought the dog and realized after a couple of months how much effort it really takes, and decide that since it doesn't fit into your lifestyle, you give it away.

2) The dog gets sick and so you give it away to avoid high medical fees (by not informing the new owner), or even worse, abandon the poor pooch somewhere deserted and hope it dies 'peacefully'. Really I think putting poor pooch to sleep permanently at the vet is tons better than
simply abandoning it. -_-"

Unfortunately in Singapore, many people abandon their dogs simply because they did not expect that their cute little puppies would not be forever cute, or that they simply need too much care then previously expected.

Monday, November 16, 2009

Responsible Dog Ownership

Keeping dogs as pets can be fun, but there's a responsibility that comes with it. It can be said that it's similar to having a child. Most often than not, people see a dog/puppy that is cute or due to a recent dog 'craze', they get influenced and just simply bring home that cute bundle.

Very often, first time owners are in for a shock when they realize that there's more than just playing with that cute bundle they brought home. And most often, they end up giving away the dog, or simply abandon it, just because they cannot handle the responsibility that comes along with keeping a dog.

Sure, it seems simple enough:
  • buy dog
  • train dog
  • feed dog
  • groom dog
  • walk dog
At least, it seems simple enough. What most first time owners forget to factor in is the time consumed to look after a dog and the effort that cones along with it. As a result, when the going gets tough, it's the dog that gets going. It's good if the owners managed to find a good home for the dog, but what is unforgivable is when some owners simply abandon their dog, leaving it to fend for itself in the harsh elements.

There's nothing wrong in having had no prior experience with dogs, but getting the right breed that suits your lifestyle is extremely important, and would make life easier for you and the dog. For example, for a person that's hardly home and lives alone, it's not advisable to go get yourself a golden retriever which requires long walks, grooming and attention. It'll be a torture for the poor dog, an for you when you come home to a very badly chewed up home.

If you decide to get a dog, that doesn't mean that you need to get a cute and cuddly puppy, let alone go buy one. The are many options. You need to know what you are getting yourself into and the amount of effort you are wiling to put in. A pet after all, is for (its) life you know...