Ranjini Haridas
Ranjini Haridas

Human or animal, how about we live and let live, why harm?

So obviously I’m not amused or shocked at the response to my stand on not killing the innocent stray dogs.

I mean it’s me and hence everyone has to take that as a God given opportunity to abuse, malign my character and of course not to forget the influx of sexual content in a lot of those reactions. I wonder why, oh wait I’m a woman so naturally that’s a given.

After a fair bit of deliberation I felt it was necessary to make my stand clear on the issue.

So here goes, fully knowing that this is only going to further the lewd comments and personal abuses coming my way, so bring it on!

The growing stray dog population is becoming a menace in our state. The fear of dog attacks and rabid dogs is something that is a threat to the human population.

So instead of trying to increase you channel or publication viewership or readership by deviating the subject and making it about me and my love for animals, why don’t you print some truths and facts about why this has become such a big problem in our society and help the general public understand?

Moreover how can this problem be tackled effectively?

Ranjini Haridas
Ranjini Haridas

Conducting Animal Birth Control (ABC) programs is the only proven way of achieving this. Neutering them will in a period of time help in reducing the procreation of these animals on the streets thereby massively cutting down on their numbers. This is not something that has been invented out of thin air. It is the only proven method to effectively counter this problem world over.

ABC also helps in making these dogs less aggressive which leads to calmer and friendlier dogs. When there is no sexual drive, the hormone levels change and hence the aggressiveness nature tends to stop.

Vaccination alongside ABC ensures that the dogs are protected from illnesses and sickness such as rabies etc., which means that the general public can be comfortable knowing if bitten that they will not be affected.

The ineffective waste management in our city and state is one of the biggest reasons why the population of these stray animals increases and hence making that effective is of primary importance if change needs to happen. We humans are to be blamed for that for improper disposal.

Yet another reason why there are so many strays out there is related to pet owners who after a period either get fed up of their dogs due to old age, sickness, injuries and choose to abandon them on the streets. This leads to them multiplying and thereby increasing the numbers further.

Pet licensing should be made strict for all pet owners with a registration fee and number and can easily be kept track off at a local block or Panchayat level.

No one is saying not protect humans from rabid dogs. If a dog is identified as rabid, it needs to be isolated and euthanized to remove the threat. There are professionals who can be called to do that. But killing innocent dogs that are not a threat in any manner is what all-animal lovers are fighting against.

A recent situation in Muvattupizha where a dog was found to be rabid resulted in the Panchayat killing 130 other innocent stray dogs. That is what we are speaking against; punish the offender not the innocent.

Rabies is currently being used as an excuse by certain people to eliminate the whole species of strays entirely and that is not acceptable, nor do the laws of our country allow it.

If all strays in any one place are killed then it creates an empty space and within no time other strays from neighbouring areas will come fill that space. If not other dogs then other species will take it over such as rats etc., thereby making a bad situation worse.

The media and certain people in high posts are giving out wrongful information about the rules and regulations misleading and misguiding the public, which is both unlawful and unacceptable.

Instead of trying to tell me what to do or attack me personally for my life choices if you actually need change pose the same questions to the people who should ideally be making sure they protect human interest.

Point your fingers at the health department of our city that have been a complete failure in framing an effective waste disposal system which is the only reason why the street dog population has multiplied and has become such a menace in the city.

Point you fingers at the government medical institutions that are turning away patients saying they don’t have the vaccinations to prevent rabies so please go to a private hospital where they get charged a bomb and most can’t even afford it.

Point your fingers at the owners of pets who after their fill, abandons them on the streets instead of taking responsibility for them.

Point your fingers and question the media houses that in the name of reporting put out false information and instead of educating the public lead them to darkness.

Moreover ask this question to yourself, doesn’t this planet belong to all living beings equally, be it trees, humans, animals or otherwise? Human beings are animals too and as of now we are on top of the food chain .We are meant to be the most intelligent of all species and hence it is upon us to protect the world and our planet from bad things happening to it whether it be deforestation, poverty, terrorism, rape or the growing street dog menace and rabies attacks.

Every problem has a reason why it is rampant and hence the most sensible thing to do is find the root cause of the problem and try to eliminate that.

As for some comments that made me laugh out loud. It seems a few out there believe that I was born into the lap of luxury and don’t know what it is to walk on the streets and travel in buses and trains.

I fully admit that today my life is comfortable and I have the luxury of driving around in a car without having to depend on public transportation but the only reason I have that luxury is because I have worked very hard since the age of 16 to get here.

Until I bought my first car I used the same mode of transportation used by our general public (autos, buses and trains). Even today my mom takes public transportation and occasionally rides a scooter and she tells me of her experiences with dogs in certain areas that come chasing after her.

I have seen similar incidents happen in front of my eyes and I have also seen dogs fight amongst themselves and have been involved in several instances where I have had to interfere so that they don’t turn and attack humans in the process.

I have been working for animal welfare in my limited ways over the past few years as an individual and now along with my partner Aishwarya Prem we have floated our own trust, Humanity for Animals.

We are mainly involved in street dog injury and accident cases, ABC and vaccination programs and further intend to expand into conducting adoption drives and awareness programs.

We have finally managed to get a rented space out of which our shelter is presently functioning.

Another common comment I just have to respond to is of the people who say that all the rabid or dangerous dogs should be brought to my house. Well definitely an interesting idea, so here is my offer, I’m willing to do that without a bat of an eyelid if you can ensure my safety as a woman out there and are willing to take home all the rapists and sexual offenders roaming freely out there. As for the innocent, whether it is human or animal how about we live and let live, why harm something or someone that isn’t a threat?

It’s only fair; let’s work towards eliminating all antisocial elements in a just manner without killing innocent lives and understanding facts.

However let’s be honest, we cannot do it without the support of the government bodies, local Panchayats, the Health department and most importantly the general public who face the brunt of all the problems first hand.

So this is a plea to all the people who can actually help us make a positive change where the stray dog menace is concerned. Let’s together cooperate and initiate ABC and vaccination programs along side ensure an effective waste management system and licensing of pets. Until and unless these measures are followed no change will happen.

If you need change you have to be the change.

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