‘state Has 2nd Highest Stray Dogs In Country’ | Bhubaneswar News – Times of India

BHUBANESWAR: With 17.34 lakh canines, Odisha has the country’s second highest number of stray dogs after Uttar Pradesh (20.59 lakh), the Livestock Census 2019 revealed. The figure has raised a question mark on the animal birth control (ABC) programme for which the state spends more than Rs 2 crore annually.
A written reply, quoting the 2019 census, by Union minister of fisheries, animal husbandry and dairying Parshottam Rupala in the Lok Sabha on Tuesday said the number of Odisha’s stray dogs rose by more than 100% from 2012 to 2019. The state had 8.62 lakh stray dogs in 2012.
UP, home to the country’s highest number of canines on streets, has managed to decrease its number by over cent percent from 41.79 lakh five years ago.
Besides UP and Odisha, Maharashtra (12.76 lakh), Rajasthan (12.75 lakh), Karnataka (11.41 lakh), West Bengal (11.40 lakh) and Madhya Pradesh (10.09 lakh) have more than 10 lakh stray dogs each. The numbers went up marginally compared to 2012 in Maharashtra, Rajasthan and Karnataka, while it declined in West Bengal and MP.
The fisheries and animal resources development department (FARD) supports the ABC programme in urban areas where respective urban local bodies execute the work. While FARD secretary R Raghuprasad was yet to respond to TOI queries, a senior officer of the department said due to lack of infrastructure and manpower very few number of dogs are being sterilised.
Jiban Ballav Das, state secretary of the People for Animals, an animal welfare organisation, said the slow pace of sterilisation has rendered the programme useless. “The government must target to sterilise at least 60% of stray dogs in the drive’s first year. The load will then go down from next year. However, the government is not even reaching 10% a year,” he added.
For 2021-2022, the FARD had a budgetary allocation of Rs 1.4 crore for manpower support for the ABC programme. The urban local bodies bear the cost of consumables, dog feeds and ARV vaccines. Around 300 stray dogs are sterilised per month in Bhubaneswar. The number is far less in other urban areas.