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K9 Maniac

Mar 11, 2009, 5:21 PM

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Extract from M'sian Dogs Deserve Better blog : thestar.com.my/metro/story.asp?file=/2009/3/7/central/3419755&sec=central

Saturday March 7, 2009

Seven dogs rescued from pound tested positive for distemper


THE director of a non-governmental organisation that has launched a canine welfare programme, is seeking public help to save the lives of dogs rescued from DBKL dog pound in Kuala Lumpur recently.
Community Development and Integration Initiative (CDII) director Firoza Buranudeen said seven of the dogs in a recent batch rescued from the pound tested positive for distemper.

Distemper is a viral infection, which is similar to chicken pox and measles in humans, and deadly to dogs if left untreated.
CDII’s venture into animal welfare programmes took off last year when the organisation launched its Malaysian Dogs Deserve Better (MDDB) project, spurred by the precarious existence of dogs in the country.

According to Firoza, distemper could be countered with the isolation of the infected dogs, which would be administered high doses of vitamins to strengthen their immune systems.

However, she added, almost all veterinary clinics did not have isolation wards and most veterinarians would turn away infected dogs lest their clients’ dogs catch the virus.

“Given this, we have placed our infected dogs in homes of kind people willing to foster them and our veterinary clinic has prescribed the necessary vitamins,” she said.

Firoza said the outbreak had depleted the project’s funds and she hoped the public would once again help CDII help these displaced dogs.

“Please help us to help them,” she said, explaining that dogs could contract the distemper virus at pounds from non-disinfected cages that became a thriving breeding ground for the virus, as well as overcrowding.

She said the CDII would also initiate meetings with local councils to recommend that holding cages be disinfected regularly and that captured dogs be kept in better conditions.

“When dogs are caught off the streets, it must be with the mindset that they may be rescued and rehomed as opposed to the belief that they would all be put to sleep,’’ she added.

Firoza also said the CDII would continue to rescue dogs from the pounds even if they tested positive for distemper or any other canine viruses.

“We will nurse them back to health and find families that will adopt them,” she said.

Firoza noted that an increasing number of pet dogs were ending up in municipal council pounds.

“We know that they are pet dogs because they have collars and some are purebreeds,” she said.

She added that it was sad that some owners, who had been careless enough to allow their dogs to be caught, did not come to claim them from the pounds.

The CDII is also looking for more veterinary clinics which are willing to work with it in its canine rescue mission.

“Currently, we work with one clinic each in Klang and Petaling Jaya, but we need to work with more clinics due to the increasing number of rescues we carry out,” she said, adding that the clinics would be paid for their services.

(This post was edited by melmel on Mar 11, 2009, 5:27 PM)

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