SOS Pakistan to launch app to rescue stray animals in danger

Mobile phone app, scheduled to be launched on March 23, 2020, will track exact location of wounded animals


Allia Bukhari December 01, 2019
Mobile phone app, scheduled to be launched on March 23, 2020, will track exact location of wounded animals. PHOTO COURTESY: SOS PAKISTAN

KARACHI: Save Our Strays (SOS) Pakistan, an animal welfare community, is launching a mobile phone application to make animal rescue efforts a lot quicker and efficient. According to the makers of SOS Animal Rescue, Pakistan’s first-ever rescue app for the strays, will detect the exact location of animals in danger and provide immediate aid through the nearest volunteers and vets.

The app will be launched on March 23, 2020 in a bid to provide relief and end violence against stray dogs, cats, donkeys and other local breeds that suffer due to poor quality of life and remain immensely vulnerable at the hands of authorities and the locals.

“People could not share the exact location of animals in need, especially when reporting from the roads, hence the rescue work would get delayed,” said Mustafa Ahmed, Director Operations and PR from SOS, while speaking with The Express Tribune.

“The idea behind developing this application is to ensure implementation of rescue services in a systematic and organised way. The app will track the exact location of the wounded animals.”

Ahmad said the app would initially launch for Karachi, Badin, Bahawalpur, Lahore and Islamabad, but eventually cover the whole country in the next phase.

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According to SOS, the application will only require address, nearest landmark, contact number and details of the animal in danger (concerning injury) to provide help. The volunteers are also being trained for this purpose while CNIC and mobile number based verification system is also being currently developed.

“We have rescued more than 1,500 animals just this year that were mostly wounded or poisoned and around 130 animals in the month of November alone,” explained Ahmed, hoping that more strays would be saved and vaccinated with the digitalised and more user-friendly approach.

Treatment of poisoned animals

The SOS rescue team, comprising a vet and four volunteers, armed with mostly hammock net and catcher poles, also pays regular visits to different areas of Karachi to save the strays that have been injured in accidents or poisoned by the locals.

“The vet has a kit with anti-poisoning injections and NG tube for stomach cleaning [to immediately nullify the effect of the poison] to save the intoxicated animal,” elaborated Ahmed.

“We have saved 65 to 75 per cent of strays from succumbing to poison,” he maintained, implying that people, even when the government has stopped, routinely poison dogs in various localities.

According to the focal person, the welfare group is also spreading awareness about animal rights in society through digital graphic designing. The SOS volunteers visit different colleges, universities and other public platforms to educate masses on humane treatment of stray animals, including TNVR (trap, neuter, vaccinate, release) programmes for controlling population.



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