“It poured heavily since the sky turned a purplish hue early in the morning and while I had no other option but to get drenched, I tasted the brownish, polluted and musky water. It tastes better than what I had yesterday, maybe because of the rain. As I look up, reality hits me hard, but the wheels of the passing two wheeler hit me harder. It hits my hind leg while I was rushing back to safety, alas, I didn’t make it back on the walkway on time. A small cut and an alarming yet, tingling pain shoots up my left hind leg. I jerk it thinking that it will probably stay for a day or two and then subside on its own. I stumble my way across the road, keeping it at the forefront of my brain that this city does not have time to stop for anything or anyone. Perhaps, I’m just slow and can’t ever keep up with the moving vehicles. As I sniff the approximately two day old burger discarded on the side of the road, I’m dumbfounded by shrill and soul piercing scream of the owner from the burger shop. He wanted me to leave but I was starving. As I assessed his tempered hand gestures and ill words, I was mentally calculating if I could muster up enough time to mouth the burger and run spontaneously, however, as the ominous steps of the owner approached towards me, I ran for my life. He had a knife clutched in his right hand and smelled like raw meat with a tint of smoked beef. That smelled delicious too. I had foraged through 5 blocks by the end of noon, my stomach grumbling more and more with every passing second. During all these slouching of mine, two women had already poured hot water on my bare body and a few children threw rocks at me all the while snickering. If only I could tell them that all I wanted was the same as any other being- food. That’s all that my basic necessity states. It was dusk now, I must be home soon. Yet again, I have to go home empty handed. Back home to my six pups who have been starving alongside me for the last three days.”
This is just a synopsis that tells more about the daily struggles in the life of a street dog, especially in places like Bangladesh. In this stereotypical country where cats are correlated to diphtheria and dogs to impurity, we have forgotten all sense of humanity along the way. Since the childhood of any infant belonging to such typical mindset, they are told and ill-educated on how to never touch any animal. “They are ferocious, they’re dirty and they are impure” or the classic “they bite”. But do they? Even if they did, why would they, with no apparent reason? When grownups go through dejection, mistreatment or are cheated upon, what do they succumb to? They never repeat their previous mistakes. Most cases that animal awareness systems have rummaged through are no different. Dogs are designed to be loyal for obvious reasons; however, they go through the same stages of hurt and misery like any other human being. Once their well built trust is demolished by the ill mentality holders, dogs restore an anti judgment which deems them to think that all humans are evil and that all they ever do is abuse them in every form possible.
Reports have noted that animal cruelty also correlates to other crimes and even violence against humans. Some cruelty against animals are solely based upon the individuals being pure sadists, they naturally inflict pain on these helpless creatures and somehow find peace in it. The other kind actually does it for fun, for example, the youngest generations, mainly situated in slums or other rural areas. They have not been provided with proper education, regulations and norms thus, turn to hideous ways as such to recreate and have fun. Recent news and reports have also shown that plenty of under rated restaurants use dog meat entitled as chicken or beef and falsely glorify their food accordingly. These results in them acquiring the dog meat for free as there are numerous numbers of street dogs and the restaurants’ achieving further more profit.
It is rather ironic to come face to face with incidents which show that animals crossing the roads or laying on the sides of the road are never paid attention to. Maximum accidents which are indefinitely unreported are actually of street dogs and pups or cats getting hit and killed by cars, two or three wheelers. However, this is where it gets interesting, car or truck drivers never think twice before hitting those innocent lives and have never exercised prudence in proper driving ethics, however, after a dog has been run over, their intestines, blood and skin mashed to the pitch black road, never will a car mistakenly drive over that obscenity. They would rather carefully pass by maintaining a safe distance from the dead body. Why is that? Where was this cautious act obscured even before such accidents took place?
The act of animal abuse stretches out to circuses and zoos, as well. Although, the same animals who are utilized to bring a smile on the faces of the young and old, when they’re unrevealed from their fancy costumes, it shows how ill treated they are. The animals are actually starved and tortured until they accomplish balancing on a pole, jumping through rings or accompanying a rider on their back. The animals suffer from serious cases of malnutrition, loneliness due to being apart from their origin- the wildlife, various health issues, being in congested cages, whipped and beaten. Recent animal activists have seen multiple cases of abandoned horses in Dhaka and Chittagong.
These horses are famous for the so called horse back or carriage rides, however, their ultimate destination always end up on the side of the roads, abandoned, starved and unbothered about. In most cases, this happens due to the horse stepping into old age or sickness which results in higher expense and lower service by them, hence the teenagers or young adults running the service can no longer accommodate. Moreover, rural areas of Bangladesh are filled with exotic birds, which by all means are legalized to be reserved. The notorious unethical business opportunists think otherwise and trap these beautiful creatures for trafficking and illegal export. The nature is being single handedly demolished and sometimes in cases like these, global warming isn’t the only one to be accused of.
Caged Sad Persian Cat Pet Shop – “Karachi, Pakistan: A sad caged pure breed Persian cat in one of the pet shop at Empress Market, Karachi, Pakistan. Pets including rare breeds of cats and dogs are kept in very bad condition in these cages without any remorse for animal’s welfare” (Getty Images)A college student in 2019 had allegedly killed a four day old cat and had recorded a gruesome footage of it which had later, gone viral all over social media. When confronted for such an inhuman act, her reasons boiled down to her not understanding the heights of her misconduct or being a science student.
In 2018, a guard in Dhaka city, had beaten two dogs and their 14 puppies recklessly with iron rods, stacked them into sacks and buried them alive. The puppies were not more than a week old and the lactating dogs were new and thriving mothers. What harm could a newborn puppy that can barely walk and see, do? Nothing, and perhaps that’s why it gave ways to indictable crimes. It’s because they can do nothing but suffer an endless time of endurance.
On the bright side, both of these notorious cases saw the light of justice due to relentless amount of protests, complaints and publicity. However, when one comes to think of it, what about the other cases of trapping, strangling, culling, beheading, torturing and mutilating animals? Those cases which are unreported and blown away with the second stroke of wind? What about those lost lives?
The founders and admin of ‘Society of Rise for Paws and Claws’, Trisha C. Bhatt, Iyana Haque and Nandini Biswas, disclosed their insights on this havoc and proclaimed that;
“About 12-15 cases are confronted by them per month on an average. Whereas, maximum of the criminals are never caught red handed due to lack of information, whereabouts and evidence. Approximately, 95% of the abuse cases survive due to proper medication, diagnosis and treatment, giving further proof that not only are the volunteers active and conscious but so are the vets of Bangladesh who are never showcased in the limelight. All the cases till now have been either of road accidents, torture or abuse of one form or another.”
When further asked about the degree of enthusiasm towards adoption in Bangladesh, the founders sadly, confessed on how stereotypical people are and that they are less interested towards local breeds and discriminate towards the animals’ color, age and gender hence are more prone towards buying foreign breeds. This also simmers down to how ignorant these people are towards adoption procedures, non judicial papers and regulations.
The people of Bangladesh should have concise knowledge that this is a developing country. An individual doesn’t have to be an alert volunteer, vet or activist to show love and care towards nature, environment, animals and other species. What’s development, if our minds are still clouded by the same old stereotype, myths and illiteracy? It is only wise to start being a human from the smaller things, may that even be plants or animals. There has been a decade old, ill saying that designate men as dogs or criminals as animals, perhaps it is finally time to understand that inhumanity was never birthed by them and that these animals uncover more empathy, loyalty, kindness and love than all of us combined.