I write to you out of deep concern about current plans for dog culling in the capital.
We understand large numbers of stray animals can cause disease and annoyance to the neighborhood, but killing is not the solution for overpopulation of strays.
Think ahead because you'll have to kill the new generation of strays only a few years after your first killings because irresponsible pet owners keep dumping and acquiring or producing unwanted animals.
Killing may be easy but it is also ineffective. Besides, it shows a total disrespect to life. You work in the name of the people of Indonesia. If the culling goes ahead, you bring shame on us and the nation.
One proven and effective method to overcome overpopulation is through spay and neuter programs which prevent unwanted litters and reduce the number of animals abandoned on the street.
We urge you work together with animal welfare organizations to ensure the whole process accords with good animal welfare practices. We believe international organizations would be more than happy to have the opportunity to help.
Carefully planned spay and neuter programs will prevent colonies of strays from multiplying, even when the collection misses some individuals. The few fertile animals won't produce any offspring since the bulk of the population is already sterile.
If rabies still poses questions, Java is already known to be free from rabies. Still, mass rabies vaccination should be carried out among the strays: Using blowpipes to administer the vaccines is highly recommended. And never forget both to educate and to apply laws and punishments strictly to irresponsible pet owners who dump and unethically breed their pets.
We always hope Jakarta will set the example for other local governments in humane policies.
We also hope, in the name of all people concerned about humanity, we will hear from you about this matter at the earliest possible opportunity.
Note: We also receive similar letters from Dragomir Daniela of Braila, Romania, Laura Hassin of Tel-Aviv, Rachel Tjandra of Jakarta, Yohana of Jakarta, Fleur Hollander of Friesland, Holland, and Rio Lazuardy of Jakarta.