Stray Dogs In South Africa – What You Should Do If You Find One
Stray dogs are all too common. But unfortunately, no matter where you are in the world, there will always be dogs that accidentally get out of their yard or are abandoned by their owners. So, let’s talk about stray dogs in South Africa and what you should do if you find one.
Local Places To Bring The Stray Dog
Animals shelters in South Africa will do all they can to keep the dog healthy and safe. These places provide positive environments for the dogs as they wait for their owners to bring them home.
Or the dogs wait for a new forever family to bring them home. Alternatively, some animal shelters have a fostering system or a no-kill policy.
Regardless, the dogs are safe at these shelters. Some of these places you can bring stray dogs are as follows:
How Shelters Work In South Africa
Unfortunately, not all animal shelters in South Africa have a no-kill policy. However, most of them do their best to keep the dogs for as long as possible to find the pup a new home.
When a dog is brought to the shelter in South Africa, they will look over the dog to ensure it’s healthy and figure out its age.
One of the first things they’ll do is scan the dog for a microchip or check the ID tag. If the pup has one of these things, the shelter can contact the owner.
Otherwise, if the dog doesn’t have these things, there’s no way to tell if the dog has been a stray for a while or if it happened to get out of its house by accident.
The shelter can file a “found pet” report. However, after about a week, if no one claims the dog, it will be put up for adoption.
If the dog is older or becomes too sick, it might get euthanized. For example, rabies is fairly common in South Africa. So, when stray dog is brought into the shelter, they need to be tested for rabies.
Sadly enough, if the dog is too sick or has rabies, it will be put down. This way, the other animals in the shelter and the humans are protected.
South Africa Laws About Stray Dogs
The primary law that South Africa has about dogs is that they must be on a leash. So if you walk around with your dog without a leash, even if the pup is near you, you could be fined.
Also, if the dog gets away from you and someone spots it on the street, they are considered a stray. The person has the right to scoop up the animal and bring it to a nearby animal shelter.
While everyone needs to be careful in case the dog is sick, nervous, or aggressive, if you see a stray dog in South Africa, you should do your best to get it to help.
For example, you can try to catch it (if it’s safe to do so) and bring it to the shelter. Or, you can call the local authorities and have them catch the animal and get it somewhere safe.
More General Advice
If you’re able to get near the dog, one of the first things you can do is check its collar for an ID tag. This will typically have the phone number of the dog’s owner. You can call them and meet you where you are to pick up their dog.
However, if they don’t have a collar, they may or may not have a home. Bring them to a local vet or shelter if the pup is friendly enough and allows you to capture them.
The vet will be able to scan the dog for a microchip. If they have one, they can locate the owner. Or, f the dog doesn’t have a microchip, the dog can safely go to the shelter.
Should that be the case, the shelter and yourself can take pictures of the dog and head to social media. Hopefully, after spreading the word a bit, the owners will see their pup at the shelter and return them home.
On the other hand, if you can’t get close enough to the dog to capture them, you can take pictures and post about the doggo on social media right away.
You don’t want to scare the dog further, and you certainly don’t want to hurt it if the dog happens to be aggressive.
Finally, call the local authorities or animal control. They can come by and pick up the dog safely and bring them to an animal shelter where the pup will be safe.
Always Help A Stray Dog If You Can
It’s your civic duty to help a stray dog in need. Whether they’re homeless or their family is searching for them, you should always report the lost dog. That way, they’ll be able to get all the help they need to find their way back home.