CBC dog culling angers Karachi DHA residents, animal lovers

KARACHI: Animal-loving Defence Housing Authority (DHA) tenants say the Cantonment Board Clifton (CBC) has started slaughtering stray dogs.

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Residents said several of the missing canines were fed and guarded their neighborhoods from intruders.

“They are no particular breed, just stray animals but they remained alert at night, which gave us a lot of peace of mind,” a DHA Phase VIII resident told Dawn.

“We would give them leftovers for their loyalty and love. “Everything was fine until the CBC caught and killed them,” the resident said with a lump in his throat.

Stray dogs, who were friendly, have been removed from numerous DHA areas. Another worried homeowner and animal rights activist Haniyeh Shaikh added, “Many of them were spayed, neutered and vaccinated too.”

Cantonment board invites concerned residents and animal rights groups to a meeting tomorrow.

My puppy Crystal was stolen by the CBC. They collected Rs6,000 from me for releasing her when I discovered her. Haniyeh said her dog had a collar.

Many of the dogs they take are old and defenceless. Poor animals are friendly too. The CBC personnel are wild, but the animals are not. They’re cruel. He added that a few days earlier, when they were collecting puppies from Creek Vista Apartments, a housewife stopped them, but they shoved and beat her instead of listening.

Many locals attended the CBC office last Friday to speak to them. They sounded harsh and irritated despite our politeness. They said they would exterminate DHA dogs. When some residents appeared angry, they lied about transferring the dogs, not killing them. We don’t believe that because there’s no room to move the dogs, she remarked.

Jude Allen, who founded the ‘I am Noor Jehan Movement’ after seeing the zoo elephant suffer due to government incompetence and lack of empathy, joined the others at the CBC office on Friday to urge people not to hurt the stray dogs.

“We went together. We met several high-ups who weren’t impressed, he continued.

At first, they disputed everything. Their activities were documented in photos and videos. Even the person at the CBC office videos. So they confessed. We were told to keep the dogs in our homes after much persuasion that they were harmless. We already care for many of them as pets. “We can’t keep them all,” he replied.

Mr. Najeeb ordered us to create a trap, neuter, spay, and release roadmap if we were serious about this issue. We are meeting at Aunty Park on Tuesday to discuss this with all those who care about these unfortunate dogs because our next meeting with CBC is on Thursday.

Jude said his organisation raises awareness of how governments exploit animals for profit. “The movement also covers senseless killings of innocent street animals by the CBC and KMC, who have no shame or fear of God,” he stated.

The Pakistan Animal Welfare Society (Paws) co-founder Mahera Omar regretted the events. Einstein defined insanity as ‘doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results.’ She added Karachi municipal authorities continue to brutally murder dogs to remove them.

“The authorities should have implemented a humane citywide mass vaccination drive to control street dog rabies by now. The animal reservoir controls the disease, reducing human transmission. If they educate local communities on dog behaviours and bite avoidance, they can minimise citywide dog bites.

“Reducing neighbourhood garbage will also reduce street dog populations. “There is no quick fix, and the situation requires political will and a sustained multi-pronged approach,” she said.

“Shooting and poisoning dogs is cruel and barbaric, but other dogs fill the void. Killing dogs doesn’t stop rabies either. When dogs are removed, their population changes. She added they can be unstable or violent and reproduce quickly while having rabies.

When Dawn contacted CBC, a spokesman said they have received many complaints about stray dogs and accusations about culling them.

“We have invited all animal rights organisations and concerned residents to the CBC office on Thursday [tomorrow] to discuss the matter and chart a course forward,” the spokeswoman stated.

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