The Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) has taken up mass Anti Rabies Vaccination (ARV) and Animal Birth Control (ABC) programmes in two wards. What is new is that both programmes are being implemented on a pilot basis with some technological help from an app.
BBMP’s Joint Director (Animal Husbandry) Lakshminarayana Swamy told The Hindu that the programmes were being implemented in Nagarbhavi in West zone and Herohalli in Rajarajeshwarinagar zone. The civic officials were using an app developed by World Wide Veterinary Services Centre, Goa.
“The app has been helpful to geotag stray dogs,” the official said and added that 384 dogs had been sterilised in Nagarbhavi ward and over 1,800 in Herohalli ward.
Another official S.M.M. Shinde said that the BBMP was probably the first corporation in the State to make use of the app for implementation of the ABC and ARV programmes. “Once a dog is caught for the ABC and ARV, it will be geotagged. After taking a photo of the stray dog, we will input all details about the animal, such as whether it is a puppy, male or female, colour, whether it is neutered.,” he said.
He said geotagging of the location also helps the civic body and animal welfare organisations in releasing the stray dogs after sterilisation. It is mandatory, as per animal rights norms, to release the animal in the same location from where it was caught.
The app also helps the civic body with better documentation.
Late last year, the city finally had an idea of the stray dog population. The dog census revealed that there were 3.09 lakh stray dogs, of which only 54.24%, i.e. 1.68 lakh, had been neutered. The census showed that the stray dog population was more in the five outer zones of Mahadevapura, Rajarajeshwarinagar, Dasarahalli, Bommanahalli and Yelahanka. In these five zones, the stray dog population was pegged at 1.97 lakh.
“Since the app was used for dog census, we also know where the stray dog population is more. This will help in launching targeted programmes in these areas and localities,” Dr. Shinde said and added that if the pilot is successful, it would be extended to all wards in the city.