“190 Street Dogs Shot.” “10,000 Stray Dogs To Be Shot.” “Stray Dog Deportation Plan Compared To ‘Concentration Camp’." “Officials Kill 58,000 Stray Dogs.” The headlines speak for themselves, but animals cannot. Activists have stepped up in order to not only protect stray animals, but also find an actual solution to animal overpopulation.
Shanghai recently implemented a policy of one dog per family in an effort to control the animal population and curb rabies -- rabies takes up to 55,000 lives per year (a far cry from the small number of deaths in the U.S. per year, as reported in… The Office). But the city’s efforts have seen a backlash from pet owners with more than one dog who fear losing their additional pets.
Adoption programs are another way to reduce the number of stray animals, an old idea that received a facelift with PetFinder.com and other online websites offering not just the opportunity to adopt a pet, but also the opportunity to procrastinate for hours online. People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) has a recent ad campaign that goes so far as to blame pet owners who purchase a dog, asking, "If you buy a dog, what will you do with the shelter dog you kill?"
Many towns and animal rights organizations focus on spay and neuter programs. Taylorsville, Kentucky, a town overrun with cats, has focused on transporting cats across city lines in order to spay and neuter each and every one of them – they have an estimated 300 left to go.
Other organizations are getting more creative. 600million.org is an organization that proposes an animal sterilization pill to cut down on animal population, and in turn, reduce animal abuse and killings. Alex Pacheco, co-founder of PETA, came out of retirement to begin the movement.
The movement is based on the notion that overpopulation is the greatest cause of animal mistreatment. There are an estimated 600 million stray dogs in the world, thus the organization’s name.
In the video below, actor David Duchovny expresses his support for dog sterilization, stating, “Many countries that have no laws against cruelty to animals control stray dog populations by poisoning, hanging, throat slitting, beating to death, electrocution, and shooting.”
Even in countries with laws against animal cruelty, there is suffering. PETA estimates that up to 4 million animals are euthanized in U.S. shelters each year.
Duchovny goes on to describe a pill being developed by scientists in order to sterilize dogs and reduce overpopulation in a safe and humane way.
In the video, Duchovny requests donations so that 600million.org can pay for development, regulatory approval, and distribution of the pill.