Bringing home issue of strays

Tay with a three-legged dog during the calendar photo shoot to highlight the plight of abandoned and abused dogs in Muar.

MUAR: More than 20 abandoned dogs are in the spotlight after being featured in a calendar to encourage the public to “adopt, don’t shop”.

Muar Animal Lovers Society founder Maggie Tay said each of the 24 strays in the calendar had a sad story — they were either abandoned by their respective owners, victims of hit-and-run or suffered from various abuses and illnesses.

“About 80% of the dogs were rescued from illegal dog breeding centres and the rest were strays that we picked up from the streets during the movement control order period.

“After rescuing the dogs, we had them neutered and found a suitable foster home for them to spend the rest of their years.

“We also made sure to showcase the strays with their scars in the calendar to remind the public that the issue of abused and abandoned animals is very real and these creatures do not deserve to suffer this way,” she told StarMetro.

She added that the 2021 calendar, available from Oct 15, featured the dogs in various poses, and some of them had missing eyes and broken limbs, among other injuries.

Under the care of their new owners, the dogs were leading much better lives and seemed livelier and cooperative during the 90-minute photo shoot, Tay said.

She added that the rescued dogs included breeds such as terrier, pit bull, chihuahua, Rottweiler and husky, and some were unidentifiable as a result of unethical breeding.

“In August last year, we rescued more than 20 pedigree dogs from an illegal breeding centre and found foster families for the poor creatures.

“There are quite a number of such home-based breeding centres in Muar and with the help of the public, we have uncovered a few of them and will continue to do so.

“The public should be made aware that buying dogs from breeding centres will add to the demand and give way to more unethical breeding activities,” she said.

Tay added that the society, with its limited resources, would check on the rescued pets from time to time to make sure that they were being cared for.

She said they had been sending stray dogs and cats for neutering to prevent strays from roaming the streets since 2014 and officially registered the society in 2016.

Those interested in getting a copy of the calendar can call Tay at 016-685 0022 or the society’s chairman, Andy Leong, at 012-635 5123.

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