Today is World Animal Day, so we compile a list of articles previously published by CairoScene addressing 8 vital issues concerning animal welfare in Egypt, which happens to be directly proportional to human welfare.
Often overlooked in Egypt are the troubling issues surrounding animal rights. Many will argue that there are plenty of problems to solve concerning the humans of Egypt as a priority. However human issues remain to be an 'imaginary' priority where no action is ever taken, keeping helpless animals on the never ending waiting list of priorities which is simply heartless. There is a lot that needs to be done to improve the animal welfare situation, and since today is World Animal Day, we decided to compile a list of articles that we have created over the years spreading awareness of this on-going heartbreaking situation.
Boycott the Giza Zoo and its Institutionalized Torture of Animals
The Giza zoo is a clear example of animal abuse. From animals dying of anxiety, to heat exhaustion, there is no shortage of reasons to shut down this zoo. The only education a child will receive at the zoo is a lesson in animal misery and the inefficiency of government run institutions.
Excerpt from Giza Zoo: Park or Prison?: The final part of the tour was by far the worst experience of the day. Led into a dark, dilapidated room, I saw two cups of tea sitting in front of a handler and a peacock. Yasser gave orders to bring me the American eagle. Before long, the handler returned with the eagle. With its wings heavily mangled, the handler instructs me to grab the bird of prey by its wings. In my hands the eagle felt frail and uncomfortable and looked physically distressed. This time I refused to take another photo, and feeling nauseous, I pre-emptively ended the tour. To read full article click here.
Future Improvement To Animal Welfare Begins With Educating Today’s Children
Animal abuse is so rampant these days that a meaningful change is not likely to occur overnight. One of the issues fueling the abuse is the cultural mindset of many Egyptians towards animals. If this mindset is to ever change, it needs to begin now with the education of children, teaching them how to care for animals and empowering them to speak up when they see abuse. This is the strongest hope for a better future for all animals. Setting a good example and shifting the mindset is The Alsson private school, that has started taking this step and once a week students gather to feed/care for balady dogs in the school’s neighbourhood of Sakkara.
Excerpt from Changing Society Through Saving Animals: "So the question that instantly pops up is: ‘Why help the animals first before the people?’ Helping animals was just a beginning to a chain of events of opening up so many other paths and ways of helping people from different communities. Now that we’ve gotten to know the locals, they’ve gotten to know us as a different social class instead of a typical stereotype. This changed the preconception they have of us. We take pride in the charity work that we are achieving because it has opened our eyes to things we have never thought of before and made us realise that we are all the same, no matter which community or class we are from." To read full article click here.
Boycott Pet Shops Selling Animals
If you love animals then boycotting pet shops that sell them is a must. That means not buying anything (food, toys, litter) from a store that sells animals. An animal bought in a pet shop essentially continues to fuel a horrific cycle of abuse. If this cycle is to end, then pet shops will need to realise that there are no profits to be made selling animals and that will only happen if they are actively boycotted. There are plenty of examples of shops that sell everything you need for your pet that do not sell animals, making them the only places deserving of your money.
Excerpt from The Horrific Reality of Pet Shops in Egypt: In the scorching heat of Cairo, animals are forcefully placed in windows, like some substandard lifeless product, caged in their own feces with little or no love in pet shops across the city. The people operating such enterprises are far from animal lovers; they’re the most inadequate individuals to be put in charge of taking care of our furry friends. From death by starvation to abandonment we take a closer look at these limbo-like places where animals are born to die. We went undercover to take a look at the horrid condition in which these animals have to live and speak to animal rights activists, who were able to help us shed light on these alarming truths. To Read Full Article Click Here
The Importance of Carefully Vetting Organizations and Charities
Among the most abused animals in this country are starving sore ridden horses and donkeys. With several organisations created to help improve the situation, we were shocked to discover that some organisations are essentially scams praying on the compassionate. That being said, there are great organisations like Egypt’s Equine Aid, Brooke Hospital for Animals, who have a proven track record of making a difference. Anyone wanting to donate needs to properly research the charity they plan to donate to, as there is nothing worse than finding your money being mismanaged resulting in further abuse.
Excerpt from EGYPT: WHERE DONATIONS CAN LEAD TO FURTHER ANIMAL ABUSE: At the heart of the criticism is a belief that creates division among animal activists in Egypt; knowing when euthanasia is a humane course of action. In the case of Mariam, Salwa and Nora Khalil, they believe that no animal should be put to sleep regardless of their agonising pain even when there is no chance of recovery. To Read Full Article Click Here
Why Trap Neuter Release is Important & How Breeding Centres Ruin The Gene Pool
Stray on Egyptian Streets continue to balloon and the only way to curb the rise of strays is to Trap, Neuter, and Release them. Even though there are plenty of strays that need adopting, many Egyptians turn to breeding centres to ensure ownership of a pure breed. However, what people fail to know is that breeding centres result in a higher risk of genetic diseases. We learnt all about these problems when we talked to Egypt’s own The Dogs Network which proved to be a valuable resource including everything from which doctors to trust to where you and your dog can go.
Excerpt from THE DOGS NETWORK: A PAWESOME RESOURCE FOR DOG'S BEST FRIEND: The main reason for this preference is because discrimination in Egypt transcends beyond just humans; some of us act as nothing more than social status symbols for masters looking to show off their canine slaves, and more often than not, the first question many strangers ask is not our names, but rather our price tags. According to Arya, “Depending on breed and pedigree, an official breeder can fetch up to 5-10K and in some cases can reach 20K. While unofficial home breeders usually range around 1-4k, however those often breed sister and brother resulting, in higher risk of contracting genetic diseases.” Arya was fortunate enough to avoid contracting a genetic disease, but Antar who came from a supposed official breeder, was not. To Read Full Article Click Here.
How You Can Help Strays Escape Egypt
You may not be able to adopt a dog, but that doesn’t mean you can’t give one a chance at a better life. Street dogs in Egypt are very obedient, loyal, and have healthier genes. It is for these reasons that Egyptian strays have become popular outside of Egypt, with foreigners looking to adopt. Looking to help is Anubis Bastet Adoptions (ABA), who find forever homes for Egyptian Dogs abroad. If you want to help and are travelling outside of the country, check with this organisation, and they may send you the fare for the dog as long as you are willing to simply accompany them on the flight.
Excerpts from For The Love of Strays: The experience was both rewarding and gratifying, and took only very little effort to make a serious impact on the lives of these battered pups. If you have ever felt like you wanted to help but didn’t know how, ABA will quickly reply to any queries as they are always looking for volunteers. According to Wallace, “ABA is always on the lookout for flight parents; Egyptians, ex-pats or tourists who can take animals with them on their flights out of Egypt. Often the animals go in the hold of the plane and the passenger doesn't need to do anything different from normal. We are always searching for people travelling from Cairo to the USA, Canada and European destinations, especially Germany, Belgium and France. Within Cairo, we also need volunteers to take pets to vet appointments (all animals are vet-checked in the week before travel) and to drive them to the airport. ABA also needs donations, as we cannot do what we do without fund-raising.” Click here for Full Article
Boycott Circuses with Animal Acts
For some reason families who love the circus fail to understand how much torture an animal endured in order to do a ridiculous trick. There are plenty of circuses that do not use animals and instead turn to human death defying tricks to entertain the masses. Cirque du Soleil has proven there is more money to be made by providing entertainment that excludes the use of animals. Unfortunately there are even more examples of circuses that still believe that animal torture is the only way to bring in audience. To understand why that is we delved into the history that popularised this brutal form of so-called entertainment.
Excerpt From HOW ANIMAL TORTURE BECAME FAMILY FUN: Wombwell's travelling menagerie included elephants, giraffes, a gorilla, a hyena, kangaroo, leopards, 6 lions, llamas, monkeys, ocelots, ostriches, panthers, a rhino, 3 tigers, and zebras. Taken out of their natural environments, many of these animals would die as a result of the harsh British climate. However their death was of no concern to the sinister Wombwell, who in turn sold their lifeless bodies to taxidermists or medical school. It was only when one of his elephants passed away that Wombwell would find yet another way of morbidly capitalizing on their death, by marketing the chance to see a dead elephant as being rarer than seeing a live one. Sadly, this stunt turned out to be successful, as many flocked to see and poke the dead elephant. To Read Full Article Click Here
How an Individual Can Make a Difference
There are those who believe that one person can’t make a difference, but that couldn’t be farther from the truth. Sometimes all it takes is a little inspiration and a bit of evidence that making a change can be done. In Egypt, there is no better example of an animal activist than Dina Zulfikar, who every day is spreading awareness of ways people can help and pressuring the government to enforce change.
Excerpt from Dina Zulfikar: Awareness Saves Animals: When Zulfikar learned that the bears were suffering because they couldn’t acclimatise to the cruel desert weather, she once again sprang into action. “I enlisted help from the best bear biologist in the world, who in turn created blueprints for a cooling system, which was submitted to the Minister of Agriculture and other zoo directors,” explains Zulfikar. The ministers approved the project, but avoided discussion on how the quarter of a million pounds needed for its actualisation would be raised. Coming to the rescue of the sun-battered bears and footing the bill was an Egyptian company named EgyTrade. As always in Egypt, the problem isn’t the building of a project, but rather its maintenance and, as Zulfikar quips, “of course, after all this nothing was maintained, and the water cooling system is not working efficiently.” Click Here to Read Full Article