FPJ Interview: Treat pets as family members and don't abandon them in difficult times, says PAWS Founder Nilesh Bhanage

On Pets Day 2022, Swarna Srikanth, on behalf of the Free Press Journal, strikes a conversation with Plant & Animals Welfare Society (PAWS) Founder Nilesh Bhanage.

Swarna SrikanthUpdated: Sunday, April 10, 2022, 05:56 PM IST
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It's the day of your kittens and puppies! Pet Day is observed on April 11 in different countries around the world, with the aim to protect and care for animals.

According to reports, the day came into being by Animal Welfare Advocate Colleen Paige, in 2006. It was then that the day and founded to celebrate the bond with we share with our pets, as well as encourage adoptions.

On Pet Day 2022, Swarna Srikanth, on behalf of the Free Press Journal, strikes a conversation with Plant & Animals Welfare Society (PAWS) Founder Nilesh Bhanage.

Here are a few excerpts from the interview, take a look:

Q. On this day of love and care towards pets, what is your message to our readers?

Every day is a pet day for an animal lover, as the bond we share with them is that of unconditional love. It grows and deepens through time. Also, there can be one such as a pet to reciprocate the love and care we put forth towards them. Someone who enjoys the company of their pets, would agree that the seem to bring in a sense of completeness to life, one's home. The key message that I would like to share on this day is that 'Treat pets as family members, they are a great joy of life!'

Q. As a pet care taker, what would are a few 'must know' factors?

One must not take up to be a pet owner or care taker, if one can't offer the basics to the animal.

  • Pet is a lifetime responsibility

  • Pet needs food, veterinary care and exercise along one's love

  • Being aware of adoption and societal laws to a fair extent

  • Care more in difficult times, not abandon

Q. Pet adoption - is there any common breed that's preferred and why? Are the ones with disabilities not picked or later abandoned?

People at times, due to hardships in life, abandon the animal which they promised to keep along for life - this is a sad reality, a bitter truth that can't go noticed.

It is generally that people adopt or buy cuddly cute looking breeds like the Labrador or Golden Retriever. If I were asked, "Adopt a pet from the streets, adopt a Indie."

However, if they aren't fed right or attract unlikely illness over a period of time due to their lifestyle being in high-rises of Mumbai and not in and around their natural habitat, the pets are set off from homes. In cases of figuring our that the animal has turned disabled, people opt to leave their pets to shelter or foster homes. The later being unsaid and understood, after paying foster bill, the dog ends up being abandoned.

Q. What is the role of PAWS towards the pets and the strays?

Role of PAWS towards pets

  • PAWS organizes annual consultation to ensure 'responsible pet ownership'

  • Solves conflict between pet owners and society

  • Death being inevitable, the NGO provides burial facility for pets

Role of PAWS Towards strays

  • PAWS runs a hospital, provides ambulance and healthcare

  • Regularly organizes vaccination drives for strays

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