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Bhutan aims to become free of stray dogs by 2030

Last year, authorities launched the Accelerated Dog Population Management and Rabies Control Programme (NADPM and RCP) with the twin aims of achieving 100 percent sterilization of stray dogs, register, and vaccinate all pet dogs, and control feral dogs.

May 28, 2022
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Bhutan is aiming to become free of stray dogs, which roam the streets of the capital Thimphu and other towns and raise a din at night, as the government, under the current sterilization drive, targets to cover all stray dogs in the country, a move, if it materializes, will help the country get rid of free-roaming dogs by 2030.

Karma Wangdi, the country’s deputy chief veterinary officer, told the national newspaper Kuensel that if 100 percent sterilization of stray dogs is achieved now, there will be no free-roaming dogs on the streets in seven to eight years. Currently, the official sterilization rate stands at 93 percent.

Similar efforts to control the dog population - estimated to run into hundreds of thousands - in the past five decades have not been very effective. In contrast, their population grew substantially.

Last year, authorities launched the Accelerated Dog Population Management and Rabies Control Programme (NADPM and RCP) with the twin aims of achieving 100 percent sterilization of stray dogs, register, and vaccinate all pet dogs, and control feral dogs.

Since November last year, over 42,879 dogs have been vaccinated and sterilized. Estimates say around 5,332 are yet to be covered and efforts are to vaccinate them as well, reported Kuensel.

Between the 1970s to 1980, the government poisoned and shot dogs in order to control their population. In the following decade, the dogs were translocated to different locations. However since 2009, the government and Humane Society International, an organization that works to promote human-animal bonds, adopted a catch, neuter, vaccinate, and release program. 

 (SAM)

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