Friday, January 11, 2008

Shock and Awe

Greater Mexico City, with a population in excess of 20 million, obviously isn't a major world leader in family planning. So you can imagine that spaying and neutering of street dogs is a somewhat lesser priority, which would explain the area's current canine population of over 3 million. (Only New York and Los Angeles, among US cities, have greater human populations)

So it comes as no real surprise that 500 dogs a day are euthanized there. But what just fucking appalled me was that "the majority are killed by, can you fucking believe this shit, electrocution." [Emphasis, in the form of italics and the phrase "can you fucking believe this shit," added.] Fuck, people, why not just cut their hearts out and toss the carcasses down the steps of Teotihuacán?

I gather from the article that there's a difference between dog pounds and "anti-rabies centers" (centros antirrábicos), with the later being the greater source of cruelty and unusualness, though I'd be hard-pressed to elaborate on that. While Burro Hall in no way advocates the kind of senseless and wanton destruction visited, for example, on animal-testing labs by certain animal-rights groups, we present here for the sake of thoroughness a list of anti-rabies centers in Mexico City, arranged by neighborhood.

This group was quoted in the article and seems to be fighting the good fight. Also, I came across this plug for an upcoming documentary that I'm sure will not be screened here.


Barking Mad Mex Files said...

If you've ever had to deal with the packs of feral dogs in DF, you might see things a "bit" differently. Even up into the mid-20th century, rabies was a fairly common -- and gruesome -- cause of death in DF, as it was (and still is)in tropical latitudes. Why do you think there are so many memorials to Louis Pasteur in DF?

That rabies has not caused a single death in DF in nearly half a century, or in the Valle de Mexico in over 20, is in large part due to the seriousness with with the problem is taken. The Centros Anti-rabicos may not be destroying unwanted -- and feral -- dogs in the most "humane" manner (more humane than seeing children and pets die of rabies?) but what is the alternative?

Centros Antirabicos are in populated neighborhoods. Gas chambers aren't exactly practical, and how, exactly, does one administer "humane execution" to a wild dogs... I'm not talking about the "alternatively housed" street dogs, who are usually vaccinated by whomever claims to own the pooch. Some of them are pretty scary, but they're only part of the canine population.

By the way, mostly they vaccinate -- FREE OF CHARGE -- people's pets. My two dogs were vaccinated free (as anyone's dogs can be in DF, every March), by woman going door to door on behalf of the Centros Antirabicos.

Burro Hall said...

The Centros Anti-rabicos may not be destroying unwanted -- and feral -- dogs in the most "humane" manner...but what is the alternative?

How 'bout destroying them in a humane manner? Those syringes used for vaccinations can also be put to other purposes. Electrocution is barbaric - not even Texas uses it anymore! And if the electricity in the DF is as spotty as it is here, it'd probably be faster to let them die of old age.

Anonymous said...

I am just catching up on your blog and came to this entry. I watched the video "Companions". I am still crying!!
I rescue animals and take care of sick ones, as you know, so you can understand how upsetting this situation is for me.
There MUST be something that can be done. It MUST change!