Activists criticize Pakistan's mass killing of stray dogs

Activists Criticize Pakistan's Mass Killing Of Stray Dogs
Activists Criticize Pakistan's Mass Killing Of Stray Dogs

Animal Rights activists are urging city officials in Karachi, Pakistan to find a new way to deal with its massive stray dog problem.

The city launched a campaign to eliminate stray dogs by poisoning them after their numbers increased at an alarming rate- putting citizens at risk of contracting rabies. Officials say around 150,000 people in Pakistan were bitten by stray dogs last year and between 15 and 20 percent contracted the disease.

According to the World Health Organization, "more than 3 billion people, about half the world's population, are living in countries/territories where dog rabies still exists and are potentially exposed to rabies."

NBC News reports Karachi officials have attempted to deal with the city's stray dog problem in numerous ways — including shipping them to an uninhabited island and even offering citizens rewards to shoot them.

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Animal rights activists have started a petition addressing the "government of Pakistan" calling the culling campaign inhumane. It points out that the WHO doesn't recommend culling to combat rabies and that it suggests a mass vaccination program instead.

Some have defended the campaign, pointing out that vaccinating and sterilizing so many stray dogs is simply too expensive.

Others have taken to Twitter to criticize the Karachi government.

One user called the campaign, "Absurd."

Another responded to the news saying, "Be it a dog or human in Pakistan the story is same.."