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Summertime Blues

Summer is here and for many that means vacations, suntans and cool drinks. However, for animal shelters across Dubai, it is truly the season of sadness.

There is a real peak in the number of abandonments in the summer months, mainly by residents who are either leaving the country or those who travel and cannot afford to take their dog or cat with them or book them into one of the many pet hotels now open across the city.

Animal shelters like K9 Friends and not-for-profit rescue groups are left to pick up the pieces, a huge strain on our resources at this time of year because of this.

Pets don’t understand what is happening and it is heartbreaking to see them sad and forlorn in these shelters who are doing their best but are now getting crowded and uncomfortable.

The truth is there are ways to prevent this from happening altogether:

  • If you're planning to go away on vacation, make sure you plan ahead and far in advance, so you're not left struggling at the last minute. Ask a friend to house-sit/pet-sit or explore special offers at pet hotels.
  • Think twice before giving a pet as a gift - the recipients may not be ready for the responsibility of an animal and might want to give them up later on.
  • Do plenty of research before welcoming a pet into your home. Different pets require different levels of care, and it is important to be prepared.

Abandoning an animal should never be the answer.

If you are a resident of Dubai and have the luxury of space, please open your home for fostering this summer, even if it’s just until a space opens up at the kennels. A recent article in the local papers estimated that there are already 40 dogs on the K9 Friends waiting list.

Rest assured these dogs are fully vaccinated and neutered.

And if you can adopt, not shop, please do. It’s the cheaper, more humane option and let’s face it, an adopted pet is every bit as loving, intelligent and loyal as a purchased pet, even if you get an adult or older animal.