Who is responsible for the disposal of dead animals?
On December 3rd, 2012, animal lover Noreen Gaskin saw an animal suffering close to Vlissengen Road and asked me to assist by picking it up. Volunteer Soraya Arjune and I rescued the dog.
The poor thing was sick and could not walk properly, so we took it to GSPCA to be put to sleep. I was told by the clinic that they could put it to sleep but that I would have to dispose of the body along with another one from the previous week.
When I asked why they could not keep the bodies in their freezer, they said M & CC cleansing tractor had not picked up the dead dogs for some time and their freezer was full. At about the same time, two men walked in to the GSPCA with a dog in a salt bag but they soon turned around and left.
Outside, I enquired as to the problem with their dog. They said the dog had met with an accident and was going to die so they wanted to have it put to sleep. They also said, “Since the GSPCA cannot keep the body for disposal and we have to go to work, we going to stray the dog.” These pet owners had no idea what to do with the body so their solution was just to stray the dying animal; perhaps a solution for them but for the rest of us just another dead dog on the streets or in the canals of Georgetown.
I asked to see the dog and saw such a sad sight staring back at me. I took a picture and told them to go back and have it put to sleep and I would take the body to Princess Street for disposal. While on my way to the Princess Street location, I saw the Mayor and City Council tractor and stopped to talk to the operators. They said they were heading to the GSPCA so I gave them the three dead dogs.
On Jan 17th, Soraya Arjune and I rescued two very sick dogs from Kitty. Soraya and a passerby lifted the kennels into the GSPCA clinic for the animals to be put to sleep (a fee of$2000 was paid for euthanization by injection). Once again we were told that we had to take the bodies for disposal. The clinic Administrator told Ms. Arjune that she had turned away three persons with sick dogs that morning because they could not keep the bodies. In frustration, I called Ms. Pollydore at Solid Waste and she said that the tractor would be going to the GSPCA after lunch to pick up the bodies.
We as volunteers are willing to help the Municipality improve the image and sanitation of the city by helping to control the street dog population but more reliable support services such as body disposal is indispensable.
Some questions we have:
Why is there no regular pick up of animal bodies from GSPCA?
On those occasions when there is no regular pick up, why can’t the GSPCA hire a driver to take the bodies to Haags Bosch dump site?
Dr. Surjubally in his weekly column writes “Don’t stray your unwanted pets; instead take them to the GSPCA….” If this is done and dogs have to be put down, shouldn’t the GSPCA take charge of storing and disposing of dead bodies?
If the GSPCA does not deal with the bodies they will most likely end up on our streets or in our canals. At the Council forum Friday 11th, I raised this issue. I do hope the authorities take note and some action is taken.