ANIMAL welfare activists have expressed outrage over a rise in the number of cases of dogs found allegedly poisoned to death.
Several of the animals, strays and pets, were found dead in Saar and Tubli over the past few days.
Among the victims was a pet dog who died a few minutes after eating something left outside Saar Riding School, on Thursday.
Owner Russel Brown told the GDN the dog, Rascal, was adopted from Tony ‘the Dogfather’ Waters’ Animal Rescue and Rehabilitation Centre in Saar.
“My wife was walking our dogs on public land when Rascal ate something left outside the riding school.
“Moments later he started vomiting, fell down and within 10 minutes he suffered a seizure and died.
“We don’t leash our dogs because they are well behaved.”
Mr Brown also said he had noticed a drop in the number of stray dogs in the neighbourhood ever since he returned from a holiday.
“I can’t prove it was poison but it’s somewhat of a coincidence that there are suddenly fewer strays in the area and my dog fell victim at the same time.”
Incidences of dogs being poisoned resurfaced earlier this month following the discovery of 14 dead strays in Tubli, an area where residents had repeatedly complained of “the menace of stray dogs”.
Activists claimed lab results had confirmed the animals had been poisoned.
In another incident, two puppies were found dead in Tubli on Saturday night.
Residents posted details of the incident on the Facebook page of the Bahrain Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals.
A resident said he saw four dogs in the area in the morning but on his way back from work he saw two of them lying dead.
“There was blood coming out of their mouths; they definitely looked as if they had been poisoned,” he said, on condition of anonymity.
Meanwhile, Mr Waters said the manner of deaths clearly indicated “obvious poisoning”.
“People going out to help strays are just completely wasting their time, resources and money; it’s disheartening.
“These dogs are not wild or aggressive, they’re just afraid and within a week of care they’re the friendliest.”
Saar area councillor Hamad Al Dossary condemned the poisoning of dogs, saying Islam insists on animal welfare.
He said he was familiar with the issue but had not received any reports of dogs being poisoned.
“We should adopt modern ways of catching strays, relocate them to decent areas and provide necessary facilities such as veterinary services.
“Strays have had a dangerous effect on society, as people, especially women and children, are reluctant to leave their houses at night.”
He urged animal-lovers to volunteer to help find appropriate steps to resolve the issue.
The GDN reported last month tenders for a new animal shelter in Ma’meer will be issued in the next six months.
The shelter will have 100 cages for stray dogs and a special section for other animals, in addition to a veterinary and ‘specialised catch’ teams.
However, the ministry said at the time that dogs would be put down if they were not adopted within two weeks.
A Bahrain Rescues activist urged people who witness a supposed poison attack to take samples of the food for testing, or call relevant authorities.
“It is the only way to identify the poison; perhaps then we can trace it to a distributor or store,” she said, speaking on condition of anonymity.
Animal welfare activists previously pooled in funds to offer a BD100 reward for anyone providing information leading to the identity of the suspected dog-killers.
Relevant information can be reported to Bahrain Rescues on firstname.lastname@example.org or on Instagram @bahrain_rescues or Facebook @bahrain.rescues.