Loving home in Kurdistan Region's Soran shelters dozens of stray dogs
ERBIL (Kurdistan 24) – Before being relocated to a newly built animal shelter, nearly two dozen stray dogs had been given a loving home in the Kurdistan Region's Soran district for four years.
In an environment in which local stray dogs suffer from a serious lack of care and support and often outright hostility, a family in Soran district, against all the odds, had extended a helpful hand with care and affection to the homeless dogs in the district.
Scenes of violence against helpless dogs on the streets motivated the family to open their doors to the feral dogs.
“We were bringing home all the dogs that have been hurt by the people,” a member of the family told Kurdistan 24.
Gradually, more dogs were being rescued until their numbers became 23.
Local animal rights groups and district authorities unified efforts to build a shelter on a 5,000-meter piece of land for the town’s stray dogs. In the new home, they are provided necessary food and given medical care. Veterinarians at the new shelter also neuter them to regulate their population.
Following its opening, the two dozen dogs had been relocated to the new facility, largely for better access to health care.
The family, similarly, had themselves treated several dogs when some of them were suffering from the highly contagious Parvo virus.
In efforts to regulate the stray dog population, Iraqi authorities recently launched a massive killing campaign that drew unprecedented outcry from locals and those from other provinces.
“Neutering is one of the healthy ways of controlling the population,” Sulaiman Tameer, a veterinarian from Duhok province and the head of the Kurdistan Organization for Animal Rights Protection, told Kurdistan 24.
He decried the current approach as dangerous to both animals and people, recalling an incident from 2008 when a police officer aiming for a dog instead shot and killed a local woman.
Iraq has no animal welfare laws, but the existing legal code allows provincial authorities to kill stray animals with bullets and poison.
Editing by John J Catherine