Animal shelter homes still face difficulties due to decreased funds amidst every sector is recovering post-pandemic. The reduced number of visitors to the shelter homes has led to a decline in donations drastically.
Dr. B.C. Ramakrishna Patron, an owner at Karuna Animal Shelter Home, which provides shelter to 4,448 animals, said, “When all the organizations were closed due to lockdown, Karuna functioned normally to fulfill the requirements of the animals at shelter home as well as the rescue of stray animals.”
Further, he added, “The shelter home faces a financial loss of around 80%. Earlier, we used to receive donations of around Rs 10 lakhs a month which is reduced to less than 2 lakhs a month. This leads to difficulty in conducting operations smoothly.”
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After the introduction of anti-cow slaughter law, several cows are abandoned by the owners and left on the roads. Therefore, specifically for the betterment of stray cows, the government is planning to construct shelter homes.
Dr. Thippuswamy, additional director, Animal Husbandry and Veterinary Services said, “Under MGNREGA scheme, the government is planning for the construction of gaushalas at taluka level by utilizing the resources.”
The increased price of fodder is making it worse for the animal shelter homes to fulfill the needs of animals and function smoothly.
Sunil Dubey, secretary at Akhil Karnataka Prani Daya Sangh said that the situation has normalized a bit as compared to earlier when there were restrictions in transportation as well as employees migrated to their hometowns. He added, “However, at present, with the reduced donations by 90%, the maintenance of 1200 animals, 40 employees, and their respective families prove to be a difficult task. It is tough to fulfill the fodder needs of 20 tonnes a day amidst increased fodder price by 60%.”
Abhu Ratiya, a fodder seller, said, “During the pandemic, we experienced the highest surge and fluctuations in fodder price since last few years. The fodder price increased by around 50%.”
Dr. Sayyed, an animal doctor said, “The treatments of animal diseases are quite costly. However, the lack of donations didn’t affect the treatment and cure of animals.” Also, he said that he voluntarily performed his duty during the lockdown under special police passes granted by the authorities.
Ms. Bhagyashree, an employee at Karuna Animal Shelter Home said that the shelter home grants an improved life and shelter not only to animals but to employees too. She informed The Observer that besides a fall in income of the shelter home, she didn’t experience a salary cut.
Animal shelter homes require support from philanthropic people for the routine financial needs of the shelter. One of the reasons why animal shelter homes receive insufficient funds is due to a lack of awareness.
“People must consider animals as an integral part of their life. They must have compassionate feelings; else the lives of animals will be more pathetic,” said Sunil Dubey.
Impana S M, a donator said, “I always donate either at an NGO or orphanage. We aren’t aware of the work done by animal shelter homes. Therefore, we hesitate and don’t realize the need to donate to animal shelter homes.
Hence, reduced donations have hampered the functions of animal shelter homes to a great extent. Amidst this situation, it is difficult for the shelter homes to operate smoothly.