The Honourable Saidai Duraisamy
Mayor of Chennai
Corporation of Chennai, Ripon Building
Dear Mayor, As the proud guardian of a rescued community dog named Cadbury and on behalf of my friends at PETA as well as compassionate Chennaites, I respectfully urge you to scrap the plan to round up as many as 30,000 dogs from the streets and imprison them in 15 new pounds in Chennai.
Warehousing dogs, even if they are sick or old, for the rest of their lives is extremely cruel. Dogs of all ages need daily exercise, mental stimulation and the chance to investigate new scents and form social bonds with other dogs. In a pound, they can do none of these things, and many dogs in such circumstances become severely depressed and withdrawn or even lose their minds.
When Jodhpur tried this approach, the results were disastrous. Confinement made many dogs aggressive, and fights soon broke out. Dominant dogs prevented timid ones from reaching food. The pounds weren’t cleaned, and dogs were soon living in their own accumulated waste. There was an outbreak of parvo and distemper, and hundreds of dogs died from these diseases as well as from fights and starvation. A similar scenario occurred in Bhutan when the country tried to imprison stray dogs.
Jailing dogs in pounds for life is extremely cruel and also a violation of the Animal Birth Control (Dogs) Rules, 2001, which require that dogs be released in the places where they were found after veterinary treatment or sterilisation.
Chennai has used dog pounds in the past, and this approach failed to control either the dog population or rabies. Removing dogs from the streets leaves their territories vacant, which results in an influx of other dogs from neighbouring areas. Dogs also reproduce quickly, so as long as unsterilised dogs remain on the streets, the stray-animal crisis will persist.
Locking up dogs like prisoners will never end Chennai’s animal overpopulation problem. I respectfully urge you to solve the problem the smart and humane way by stopping it at its source. Please focus Chennai’s efforts on an aggressive animal birth control and anti-rabies programme.
May I please request that you keep me informed of your decision through Sachin Bangera of PETA? You can write to him at [email protected]
Thank you for your attention to this urgent issue.