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15th March 2011

Highlighted Campaign for March 2011

Hello from Sierra Leone!

After being here for only a week and a half, I am saddened by the sheer numbers of stray dogs roaming the streets of the capital city, Freetown. While one day I smiled watching a very cute toy Chihuahua playing with an equally cute medium sized bitser, generally I am deeply upset by copious numbers of stray dogs, many of them looking hungry or ill, yet with most females either nursing or pregnant. I wasn’t sure if I would find anything about this issue on the internet, but I did go ahead and google it as I am aware of programs elsewhere in the world trying to help stray dog populations, such as in Bali, Indonesia.

I did find that the UK arm of WSPA (World Society for the Protection of Animals) has a posting about this issue which really explained to me what I am seeing. It explains that the huge population of stray dogs in Freetown has come about because of the overcrowding and desperately poor living conditions present in the capital city since the end of the civil war in 2002 (the population in Freetown exploded from 1 million to 2 million in less than 5 years). A build up of refuse and biological waste has provided a food source for stray dogs and consequently they have bred freely. It is now believed that Freetown has the highest stray dog population in the whole of Africa. From what I have seen I can truly believe this to be true. Although solutions to this problem can’t be easy and may not happen in a timely manner, WSPA is working with Sierra Leone Animal Welfare Society (SLAWS) to try to address the issue in a humane manner.

To read the posting take a look at:

Also an interesting read is:

Although since it was posted back in February 2010, I am unsure if this gentleman is still active in Freetown. I hope he is!

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