Wednesday, January 16, 2013

1246. Animal activism. An abandoned animal shelter

Straits Times Jan 11, 2013 report: 31 dogs rescued from 'abandoned' animal shelter.

In Singapore, the government had designated some land in Pasir Ris as spaces for dogs. Entrepreneurs bidded for the land and build the kennels or tanks to house the approved species of animals like dogs, cats and fishes. They developed the land and rent out the kennels to private individuals, some of whom operated animal shelters.

However rentals are very high compared to other countries with lots of land. Hence some animal activists find that they can't sustain their operations as they board more homeless dogs. After some years if they don't have financial donations if they could not manage their operations. This would be probably what happened when volunteers at Madam Yap's Shelter in Pasir Ris had not seen its operator for many week and 31 dogs were 'abandoned'.

In animal shelters, the dogs needed to be vaccinated against the serious viral diseases of distemper and parvoviruses. They needed heartworm disease and tick prevention. However, it is extremely difficult to do all these preventive disease program if the shelter has insufficient funds.

A few days ago, I met an animal activist who rented Pasir Ris kennels for $8,000 per month. She had given up this shelter and relocated the dogs or rehomed them.She said Pasir Ris kennels would be taken back by the government in 2014.

Madam Yap's shelter is reported to cost $4,000 a month to operate. This included rent, utilities and a full-time worker but not food and treatment for the sick dogs. Save Our Street Dogs has taken over the place. Their email is 

There is another shelter called Madam Wong's shelter which is still operational, according to my intern who visited Pasir Ris last Sunday, being driven there by her father who doted on her. I had asked her to write an essay on "Animal Activism in Singapore".


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