We are delighted to announce that, following months of discussion, planning and training, Palestine’s very first humane stray management programme for street dogs will be launched in the coming months in the city of Tulkarm, thanks to generous funding from UK-based charity, Dogs Trust. The five-month pilot programme seeks to trap, vaccinate, neuter and release (TNVR) up to 240 street dogs with a view to roll out the scheme in the long-term, both in Tulkarm and other major Palestinian cities.
The grant provided by Dogs Trust will cover the installation of purpose-built facilities for dogs following surgery, specialist equipment for safe and humane capture of animals and a series of public engagement activities, amongst other things. The UK-based charity has already funded training for the members of the PAL veterinary team to ensure that they are skilled in the safe capture and release of animals.
Led by PAL and working in partnership with the Al Najah University Vet School, the project not only seeks to benefit the dogs in question, but will also play an important role in capacity-building in the region. During the pilot study, 32 final-year vet students will be trained in spay and neuter surgery; a procedure not widely practised in Palestine at present. The programme will therefore ensure that, as newly-qualified vets embarking on their careers, they take with them skills to ensure that responsible pet ownership is encouraged via their work in private practice.
Said PAL Executive Director, Ahmad Safi:
“We have been in talks with Dogs Trust since the beginning of the year and are hugely grateful for their support for this project; not just the generous grant that they have provided, but also the expertise and support their team has offered in the development stages of the programme. We are determined to make this project a huge success and are confident that this is the beginning of a significant shift towards improved welfare for dogs, both strays and those kept as companion animals, in Palestine”.
Said Gareth Thomas, Head of International Projects for Dogs Trust:
“We are very pleased to be able to support PAL on the development and delivery of their TNVR pilot project, which will allow them to pioneer the first humane dog population management scheme in Palestine. We were impressed with their application and are confident in their ability to make a very positive impact on the lives of dogs in Tulkarm.”
At present in Palestine, the stray dog population is targeted by lethal control methods, including poisoning and live shooting. These methods result in immense suffering whilst doing little to reduce the roaming dog population so the need for change is urgent. During the stakeholder engagement process in the planning stages of the new scheme, the local authorities in the region pledged their full support for a move towards humane management techniques.
How You Can Help
The funding for the pilot project provides a fabulous first step for PAL to begin to tackle the stray dog population in the West Bank but it is vital that we now begin to build a solid and sustainable support base in order to ensure that the project can continue and expand beyond the initial pilot period and create long-term and lasting change. We are therefore delighted to invite you to be a part of this ground-breaking project by getting involved in our brand new “Save a Street Dog” campaign. Your generous support will help us to save lives. Please click here, or on the picture below, to find out more.