KUALA LUMPUR: The dumping of pet animals such as cats and dogs have tripled around the city following the national shutdown to stop Covid-19, according to the president of the Malaysian Animal Association, Arie Dwi Andika.
He said the estimate was based on information provided by community feeders, who report that they have spotted newly-abandoned animals at several locations such as remote industrial and non-residential areas.
He said the irresponsible owners selected these areas on purpose to cover their activities, not caring about the safety and the welfare of the animals.
“For example, an area usually has five dogs normally but yesterday, it has tripled to 18 to 20 dogs. All these dogs are friendly, in good health, clean and not aggressive,” he said today.
At the same time, Arie also did not rule out the possibility that the pet owners were acting out of fear of infection (from the animal) and not able to look after them after they had lost their source of income because of movement control order restrictions.
He urged the authorities to implement a compulsory microchip identification system as it would help to detect the owners who had dumped the animals.
A lawyer, Nor Zabetha Muhammad Nor, said pet owners who failed to provide proper lodging, healthcare and diet to their pets, could be charged under the Animal Welfare Act 2015.
The law provides for a penalty of a fine between RM20,000 and RM100,000 or up to three years’ imprisonment on conviction.
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