EVEN AS it has failed to curb the stray dog menace, the Chandigarh Municipal Corporation has appealed to city residents to adopt stray dogs as pets. As many as 10 to 12 cases of dog bites are reported everyday in the city, which has around 8,000 stray dogs according to the records of the civic body. Mayor Asha Jaswal issued an appeal through the media on Wednesday, seeking that city-based NGOs should come forward for adopting stray dogs. She said the efforts of local residents and NGOs would help many stray dogs find homes.
“If not fully grown dogs, the NGOs can at least train puppies. As far as I know, puppies when trained can even be sold to others. If everybody comes forward to adopt a stray dog, we would be successful in checking the menace to a large extent,” Jaswal told The Chandigarh Newsline. Jaswal said the only way to check the menace on the streets was if people could take over the responsibility of the stray dogs as their pets. She would write to all the NGOs to come forward for this initiative.
Any individual or NGO will have to intimate the office of medical officer of health of the municipal corporation before adopting a stray dog. Mayor Jaswal has already announced that those adopting the stray dogs would also be honoured by the civic body. People for Animals (PFA) chief Payal Sodhi said it was a really good initiative. “When an institution head or a government body comes forward with such an initiative, a person who is not a dog lover will also come forward to adopt the community dog.”
She added: “Moreover the street dogs are good scavengers and they are already trained. If I feed street dogs on my lane, they will guard my house. Similarly, if everybody on my lane starts feeding them and does not stone them away, they will guard the entire lane because they become familiar with the owner.” M S Kamboj, an official, said around 15 dogs are daily sterilised. He added, however, if people take up adoption, the problem could be solved to a large extent and the street dogs would not get violent and bite residents. “There are street dogs from neighbouring areas of Panchkula and Mohali that come in Chandigarh, but our sterilisation work is on in full swing,” said Kamboj.