Any views on the new catch and kill dog policy?

It was announced last week that there's to be a new policy to deal with the beach dogs.
For two months we had a pilot sterilisation programme when dogs were sterilised for free.
This was to be extended this year island wide but instead we have the new policy which by their own admission the gov says witl cost £900 a day.
Couldn't this go towards the sterilisation programme instead?  :|

Check out PAWS site for more information.

Thanks for reading.

I actually can't believe what i just read on ur link. Perhaps naively, i thought they were still sterilising the dogs.

I can't believe that they sterilised the dogs 4 a while, after an article in an English newspaper,and now they think that the "heat is off them " they r back 2 catch and kill.

And the Manner in which they catch them them kill them is so, so cruel.

I for 1 will b spreading awareness  of whats going on in anyway i can 2 people back home and on the island. Hopefully if every 1 does this they will b forced 2 stop this astrosity!


Justice for them... I hope they can stop this kind of brutal activity in any country once and for all!!

Views?? I think the overall view from people on the Island whether Expats or locals is :( :( :(

Catch and Kill does not work - but mass sterilisation over a period of 5 years does. Free sterilisation for local people will cost less than doing the catch and kill and will have a better impact on the "stray" dog situation.

Maybe the law should be changed to say all dog owners should have their dogs sterilised unless they hold a breeders licence or exemption certificate. Huge fines should be in place if you do not comply.

Thought provoking..........

Very very sad if this goes ahead :(

Hello daisymay2,

Well since your original question was worded "Any views', I trust that indicates that you're open to all views, not just those that are shared by you.

I'm speaking from the perspective not only of a (life-long) pet owner, but also someone who has for the past 13 years lived in a country where the problem of stray and feral animals is probably a million times worse than it could ever be in Mauritius.

Brazil is has a population of nealy 204 millon and a land mass of over 8.5 million Km². It is estimated that there are in excess of 30 million abandoned animals in Brazil.

While sterilization programs should always be an important part of any animal control program. The idea that sterilization, by itself, is a solution is so overly simplistic as to be laughable.

It also completely ignores the existing health and safety risks, both to humans and other animals, which are presented by stray animals, and these are quite significant indeed.

These include (but are not limited to) Animal attacks, Rabies, Leptospirosis, Samonellosis, Toxoplasmosis which while more common in cats is also found in dogs, a whole host of parasites such as tapeworm, ringworm, roundworm and heartworm. These intestinal parasites actually become much more infectious to humans as the feces of dogs dries in the sand on beaches, they are therefore much more likely to be contracted especially by children playing on the beach.

Animal (dog & cat) feces is probably is probably the single largest contributing factor to the alarmingly high E. Coli bacteria counts in coastal waters. (livestock for inland waters)

A sterilization program does absolutely nothing to address these real and present dangers to human health and safety. So please, while I can understand your sadness over the current government action there in Mauritius, please don't try to infer that sterilization is the "cure all", it clearly IS NOT. It seems that there is more concern here for the wellbeing of these stray dogs than for the safety of CHILDREN!!! I have to wonder how many who oppose the move are themselves parents? I certainly wouldn't want to risk my young son's health and safety with such a cavalier attitude.

Just my own personal opinion.


Rosiewestie :

Catch and Kill does not work - but mass sterilisation over a period of 5 years does.

While sterilization is an important part of any program, even after 5 years it's not going to eliminate the problem of stray dogs, it never has done so in ANY jurisdiction that has implemented it over a long-term. Aside from that, what do you propose that authorities do during the time lag for any (supposed) results to kick in? Just sit on their hands doing nothing and wait?

The answer is just not that would be absolutely no different (and no less laughable) if I suggested that all those who are so concerned about the program, simply take one of these stray dogs home, sterilize it and care for it for the rest of its life. At least that would reduce the overall population of beach dogs by ONE.

If I recall from your previous posts over the years, you have never lived in Mauritius nor have you ever been here.

All animals and humans carry diseases - I was many years ago hospitalised due to catching Toxoplasmosis from a family cat, my cat in the UK.

If you research into HSI (Humane Society International) you can read about the work being done in India, street sterilisation's and in one area, the stray population has fallen by 93% in 5 years !! Absolutely fantastic.....

Catch and kill in any society in the World is no longer acceptable, it is inhumane and barbaric and so outdated. Can I suggest you google Daily Mail video and report from Mauritius from a couple of years ago and then tell us all who live here in Mauritius that this is acceptable. The local people do not want this to happen anymore.

The Island is beautiful, the local people are so lovely, friendly and welcoming and the quality of life is fantastic, the dogs are friendly for the most part in fact they rarely approach, most of us have adopted one or more and they are so loving.

So what your saying is that the EXPERTS the HSI are totally wrong...hummmmm

One need not be in any particular nation to clearly understand the problems posed by stray animals there. Have you actually been to India? I would guess not, but you certainly can understand the problems there through other means. No, to answer your question I have not been to Mauritius, but speak from extensive experience in a country that has a much more severe animal control problem than you can possibly imagine. I'm sure you've never been here to Brazil either, but I bet you can (base on your own experiences) have a relatively good idea of the magnitude of the problem here. Moot point!

While the progress made in India is phenomenal, by any yardstick with which one wishes to measure it, your facts serve to prove my point. Even there they've reduced the problem significantly, but not eliminated it entirely. Nor does it do anything in the short-term to eliminate the significant health risks posed by the existing stray animal population.

Clearly with massive sterilization programs such as mounted by India, the population is going to be significantly reduced by attrition over the long-term. If no new breeding takes place populations naturally drop as existing animals die off. In a perfect world where we could sterilize 100% then that would be great, this is not, nor ever will be possible. What do you suggest that public health authorities do in the meantime? Does the general public simply have to accept the health risk while they do nothing other than sterilize? Really now! You seem to forget that there is such a thing as "accountability" public officials (whether we like it or not) are accountable to all of their constituents, not just select interest groups. They are duty bound to take some kind of action, whether we agree with it or not. That's exactly what the political process is all about..... if we don't like something, we get involved in the political process in order to influence how things are done, change things. We don't just sit back and armchair quarterback after the fact.

I see no useful purpose in arguing my point of view further, since regardless of what one says to animal rights activists there is always going to be a disagreement. I am an animal lover, life-long pet owner (all rescued animals), but I am also a realist. So let's just agree to disagree and leave it at that. Otherwise we're just beating a dead horse. Obviously only one side of the coin is what is really wanted in this topic thread.

You forget we are a small Island not India or Brazil - we are enclosed and small - Sterilisation will work here...

Catch and Kill has been done for years here and it has not worked there are now more dogs.

Please read PAWS and SOS views on this and yes I have been to India ;)

There are risks to our health everyday, careful with that fork as it may piece your tongue or tonsils and cause an infection, be careful of the sun, you may get skin cancer, be careful swimming in the sea etc etc

Good personal hygiene and washing your hands goes a long way....

Why would you assume I am an Animal Activist ? Because I care ? because I am kind? Because I hate cruelty of any kind?

I work with disadvantaged children/ human right/ abused women/environment etc, I am just a normal mum who cares for the society she lives in, I don't expect to change the world singularly , but united with others we can make a difference.

Sorry if I appear not to have been on much over the last few months been too busy actually out there in the real world doing volunteer work, trying to make a difference - Just like many men and women here :)

I would never comment on any issues to do with Brazil nor give my opinion as I know nothing about Brazil, if asked then I would direct them to you as this is your area of expertise.

Catch and kill has never worked,I can remember the lorry going around and catching dogs since I was a child,am now 56 yrs old,fat lot of good that did

The law should be more severe and it should be enforce too,already there has been changes in the way people care about their animals,great pity that the government does not share the same views,CATCH AND KILL ,does not work,it has been going on since I was a child,sterilisation,education,supported by law enforcement THAT IS THE ONLY WAY FORWARD

There has never been anyone in MRU who has contracted it from a dog,REASON SIMPLE,THERE ARE NO RABIES IN MRU END OF,AS for others you can catch it in any part of the world,I had parvo 25 yrs ago in sheffield,all my animals are vaccinated,more chance on humans passing a disease on an animal than the other way around,the most common disease you will see in MRU,is mange which is easily treated

I am on my fourth mauritian dog,she will be here with me mid march,these dogs are so friendly as they come in contact with humans all the time,tourists feeds them,without any hassle at all,very affectionate and very grateful,I would have a mauritian dog anytime

(Moderated : inappropriate)

Animals are being slaughtered in the millions everyday for food, fun and leisure in every corner of the world. Think you might need to take your fight elsewhere.

I don't condone killing in any form but sometimes you got to do what you have to do. And as James has said, it's no point arguing with those 'animal activists' here.

Sterilization has not and will never work in Mauritius.

There are presently more than 150,000 stray dogs roaming the streets. So what alternatives do you suggest? You really think people here will adopt stray dogs in numbers. Some will do maybe and then what? This stray dog issue has been a plague for Mauritius for decades.
And it has to be said that Mauritius is not yet a dog lovers paradise where the owners will go to such extent as to invest money and time for long to cater to the animal's need. Many dogs will find their way to the streets again.

Having said that, I support the catch and kill policy until the problem is solved and the numbers brought under control. Then only will we be able to start the education program about animal welfare.

Hello KavirajG,

Over 150,000 stray dogs on an island with a land mass of 2,040 Km² means 73.5 strays for every Km². If the OP doesn't think that's a significant problem that the authorities must act upon, I don't know what is.

I wonder how many that are advocating castration as the only answer are willing to go and round up all 73 strays within that radius of their homes, take them in and care for them rather than see them put down??????

Any volunteers out there folks? Please raise your hand!!!

It's quite easy to criticize the actions of others, especially if it's the government. What isn't quite as easy is actually doing something to resolve the problem yourself.


What a load of poppycock,how does catch and kill work,when it has not for 50 yrs of my life possible longer,I can only tell what I can remember,yes millions of animals are killed for food,but we don't want to eat our mauritian dogs catch release and neuter does work,already the mauritian people are learning how animal welfare should be,there is room for improvement but with education ,in 2007,there was 300,000 dogs roaming the street,the amount greatly reduce,so that shows that sterilising is the only way forward

Awww I feel sorry for the dogs all the time when I visit Mauritius :( Even met the same dog in two separate visits


Nobody is saying that mass sterilization of stray dogs does not work, clearly it does. That said it is only part of the solution and resolves thing in the long-term. However it does not have ANY effect on the existing problem in the short-term.

What, pray tell, do you suggest as a viable solution that will work in the short-term, something that will substantially reduce the immediate problem and serious health and safety risks to humans that these thousands upon thousands of stray dogs represent. Surely, you aren't proposing that local government sit on their hands for 5 years or more until attrition takes care of the sterilized stray dogs that you propose are simply released back into the wild?

Now who's talking a load of poppycock? Again if you have any viable suggestions I'm more than willing to hear them. So far you just criticize other opinions that don't mesh with yours, but continue claiming that sterilization is the only answer. The government there has been doing just that... seems you haven't noticed that hasn't been working too well either.

I understand there are about 200,000 UK citizens or so in Mauritius, maybe if each one adopted one of these strays and guaranteed they'd care for it and take full responsibility for it from that point on, this would resolve the situation once and for all. So far I don't see that happening, it appears they just criticize what local officials are doing, without offering any real alternatives, typical of animal activists worldwide.

KavirajG, - Not spoken for a long time ;) 

I think maybe the post is not very clear as to why people are not happy about the Catch and Kill policy that has just been released again after over 1 year of it stopping. If People would click on links or go to PAWS or SOS pages they will see the reason why, but let me very briefly explain:

HSI (Humane Society International) and the Government and various animal welfare here all worked together over a year ago, a census was done of the Island and it was decided the Government working with HSI would fund a TNT programme  (Trap, Neuter & Release)  This is much cheaper than catch and Kill, and catch and kill figures from previous years showed it was not working.

So for the last year hundreds of dogs have been caught, sterilised and re released, we have all worked together covering various area's, also raising extra money to do sterilisations in our area's, one large squat in our area has only 7 dogs left to sterilise, all booked in for later in the month, then all the dogs in that particular squat will have been sterilised. People around the Island are working on various area's.

The HSI has a team of 10 vets working in the North sterilising.

So lots of time and money has been spent so far sterilising hundreds of dogs.

For everyone then to see that the new Government has resumed the catch and kill policy was such a shock to us all, dogs that wear certain collars showing they have been sterilised are also being caught, so all the hard work and cost of the last 18 months will be wasted.

Please now can you see why people are upset?

I'm sure that everybody here understands mathematics. Numbers don't lie, so lets look at some facts just to show why a catch / sterilize / release program is NOT in itself ever going to work. Maybe then you will start to see things differently with some logic and then see the point I have been trying to make all along.

First we must assume that the estimated population of stray dogs on Mauritius is correct, and I see no reason that it would not be. That population is estimated at 150 thousand.

The surgery to sterilize a dog takes from 15 to 90 minutes, depending on the animal. Various factors come into play here, sex of the animal, size, age, health conditions and if the female is in heat. So lets say a fair average would be 30 minutes.

Even working 24 hours a day, 7 days a week on an assembly  line process the surgeries would require 8.56 years just to sterilize the present population of stray dogs.

Do the math, you'll see that is the correct figure:

150000 / 30 min. =  75000 hours / 24 hours = 3125 days / 365 days = 8.5616 years

That does not even take into consideration all of the pups that would be generated by the remaining unsterilized dogs during that 8.5 years. The supply of new breed would make this a truly endless project.... in short impossible to accomplish effectively.

That said, it still MUST be a major part of the overall solution. That only stands to reason.

We're not talking about Fifi, your average lap-dog here, these are after all feral animals. They pose a risk of attacks and bites on both humans and other animals. They also pose a significant risk as feral animals for spreading various serious diseases. That is a factor that SIMPLY CANNOT BE OVERLOOKED. So we sterilize these animals and release them back into the wild where they certainly won't procreate anymore, but we have done NOTHING to eliminate the health and safety risks as a result.

Yes, in the end we've reduced those risks somewhat, but with the continued breeding of the dogs that it will clearly be impossible to sterilize there is absolutely no way that the catch / sterilize / release approach will be any more successful as would the catch and kill approach.

It's very easy for people to look at a problem from their own narrow perspective and make all kinds of claims. However, the facts speak for themselves that a wholly "one-sided" approach is not the answer and is doomed to failure from the get go. This problem is NEVER going to be resolved in any satisfactory way until all of the stakeholders; the local population, government, health professionals and animal protection groups can all sit down together and work out a comprehensive multi-faceted approach that everybody can live with. That will take open mindedness that I'm not sure that many proponents of the sterilize / release approach and ONLY the sterilize / release approach are capable of.

So, before you respond think of some realistic means of dealing with the health and safety risks these dogs present during the years it would take for this approach to have any significant results - PLEASE. Because if you can't present viable options you're simply standing there and saying, "It's my way or no way!!!" That is clearly not going to do anything to resolve the matter at all.

James, may I please correct a couple of points. 1) There are far fewer than 150,000 stray dogs in Mauritius. The highest percentage belongs to owned but strayING dogs. These are dogs that have owners, are quite possibly sterilized already, get some form of veterinary care but are allowed to wander freely by people who do not have the facilities at home to confine their pets. 2) The numbers of dogs on beaches is very low indeed. Perhaps 5 - 10 dogs maximum. Almost all have been sterilized and vaccinated, in some cases micro chipped. Most are gentle and shy. They pose NO threat to people at all, either from aggression or risk of disease. The government does not plan to remove feral dogs from the sugar cane or from violent areas around the island. They choose instead to target the easy gentle animal. This is unacceptable. Mass sterilization DOES work and is the only effective way to control roaming dogs and cats. As has already been mentioned, mass killing was prevalent in Mauritius for many years. The numbers of stray and roaming dogs spite of catching and killing over 200 dogs per week. The answer is education, sterilization and probably most important, much stricter animal welfare laws. Mauritius is one of the highest dog owning countries in the world, with many people owning more than 5 animals. This needs to change and people need to be made to become more responsible. I have lived in Mauritius for 10 years and worked in animal welfare for most of that time. I certainly see improvements; people actually taking their dogs for walks! The government needs to take steps forward, not backwards.

I am not sure where you are getting your figures from but 200,000 UK Citizens in Mauritius?? According to Government figures there are 243 - rather less than your figures.
Official figures are:
The majority of the population are Indo-Mauritians (people of Indian descent) who make up 68% of the population.
Creoles (of African descent) are about a quarter of the population.
There are approximately 30,000 Sino-Mauritians from the Hakka and Cantonese sub-ethnic/linguistic groups.
Franco-Mauritians, or Mauritians of French ancestry number about 24,000
There are a small population of British citizens living and working in Mauritius less than 1%

Also the dogs are much much less than the 150 thousand that you state.

I have not bothered reading all the drivel about the issue. Here are some facts:
If you try to sterilize the approximately 100,000 stray dogs on the island, and there is approximately 250 working days in the year, then you will need to sterilize 80 dogs a day, Where do you store the dogs before and after sterilisation? And how do you feed them? Who is going to PAY for it? Do you feed them with dead stray cats? And if dogs are kept in close quarters, they will get diseases. Are we going to put a special tax on the bunnyhuggers to pay for all this? How many extra veterinarians will have to be recruited from overseas? How many support staff will you need to run all of this? What is the breeding rate of the dogs, meaning how many litters do they produce in a year? Add that to your stray dog population.
In addition there is also a stray monkey problem on the island and they are starting to encroach on the villages and towns in the south and the central plateau.
Now, I am waiting for a good rabies outbreak here, and then we will see where everybody stands on the issue.
My 8 year old daughter was recently attacked an bitten by 2 stray dogs.
There are various ways to deal with these issues.
1) Mass sterilization. (See above) It has never worked and it never will.
2) Catch and kill.
3) introduce viruses into the habitat to which they have no resistance to and then kill the survivors. (Biological warfare)
4) Catch them and export them as cash crop to Asia.
5) Catch them and process as animal feed. (creates jobs)
I hereby copy a paragraph from wikipedia on the subject of Marion Island. Read it.

"The wildlife is particularly vulnerable to introduced species and one particular problem has been cats. In 1949, five domestic cats were brought to Marion Island to deal with a mouse problem in the station. The cats multiplied quickly, and by 1977 there were approximately 3,400 cats on the island, feeding on burrowing petrels instead of mice, threatening to drive the birds to extinction on the island. Some species of petrels became extinct on Marion Island, and a "cat eradication program" was established. A few cats were intentionally infected with the highly specific feline panleukopenia virus, which reduced the cat population to about 600 by 1982.[9] The remaining cats were killed by nocturnal shooting, and in 1991 only eight cats were trapped in a 12 month period. It is believed that no cats remain on Marion Island today."

This is an example on how to deal with a serious problem and how long it took to solve it.

There is no easy way to resolve it  and the problem was caused by ........ (I leave it to you to pass blame)

I did not bother reading all the animal-loving bleeding heart expat drivel as well but to clarify my point...According to the latest reports by the Ministry of Health, Ministry of Tourism and the Ministry of Environment, there are 120,000 stray dogs in Mauritius. These are official figures and there are many more in remote corners all around the island and their number is increasing. Just go anywhere on the island and you will feral dogs roaming around in pack of 10-15-20.

The article is in French but it's easy to figure out. … urice.html

Mauritius is a developing country with limited resources and it certainly has other more important priorities than caring about stray dogs. And also, the authorities cannot keep on betting on measures so as not to offend some people. It's high time to deal with this problem.

Catch and kill is only viable solution for now. I hope the government does not back down this time.

as a mauritian, dogs are sacred to us and we must not hate or kill them

this is not mauritian culture to kill dogs.

What a savage response! I do hope you are not one of the people in your area deliberately poisoning dogs. Dogs are NOT a threat to humans. I suggest you contact your nearest animal welfare organization, PAWS, and discuss facts. If your daughters were bitten, and I am extremely sorry to hear that, I hope you made a complaint with the local police giving all the information and description of the dogs. I would suggest the dogs were owned, roaming dogs. Dogs owned by people who allow them out to roam freely during the day. This is the most serious animal problem in Mauritius today, not stray dogs.  The HSI census conducted over the last few months has identified no more than 58,000 stray dogs, most of whom are never seen as they hide out in sugar cane fields and woodland. There are many more owned dogs roaming and breeding. Mass sterilization IS the answer but must be carried out with education and law enforcement. High fines must be imposed on people who allow their dogs to roam. Many of the dogs picked up by the MSAW vans are owned, friendly and very frightened animals as these are the dogs they can catch! They need to move in to the difficult areas for animal control, not catch and kill people's pets. It is insulting and naive to suggest it is starry-eyed, animal loving ex-pats who are driving the campaign against catch and kill. Professional animal welfare organizations from all over the world have signed the petitions and written to the government. These organizations have many years of experience in many countries around the world. More that 10,000 signatures were collected and the highest number came from Mauritian citizens!

i care for animals and they have rights and they are living beings and we don't kill them

i stand for animal rights and dogs must not be killed

Hi everyone,

Why everybody is getting upset and provoking each other here?
We are not here to criticize the decisions made by the government and we are not here to fight and say who is right and who is wrong as well !  :sick

Everyone has his own point of view concerning the catch and kill dog policy and it would be best if we can respect it.

Thank you


I don't know what this HSI is but I know the reality in Mauritius and stray dogs, whether they had owners or not is a huge problem in Mauritius and must be contained.

About your 10,000 petition, let me tell you Mauritians give their signatures everywhere without even knowing or believing in what they are doing. Ask those same people if they are willing to take in a dog or will get your answer.

And as Priscilla said...we are not here to criticize the decisions made by the government. Colonial patronizing is as bad.


Answer to your questions about the mauritians who has sign the petitions,yes am one of them ,I live in the UK and I have two mauritians dogs,one of them is a beach dog from tamarins,my first mauritian dog was a street dog,I took off the street in 2007,sadly we lost him through illness in 2012,my fourth mauritian dogs will be in the UK mid March ,she was born in jumbo supermarket car park ,I rescued her and her mum,puppy is coming to the UK ,mum is staying with the family,hope that answers your question

dogs are not to be blamed.

those who dump or abandon them are heartless and must be prosecuted for animal cruelty.

i have adopted 10 stray dogs and they are a blessing and a joy to live with.

as a hindu, we are reincarnated when we leave this world and we come back in a different form of life, like a dog.

so, please don't kill dogs as they are living beings

expats and mauritiians must band together and stop the likking of dogs.

Safeena...not really...the fact that an expat adopted some dogs or whatever certainly does not answer my question nor help resolve this issue.

As for the owners, if they do not want their dogs ending with lethal injections, then they better keep their pets inside or in their backyard. Other people don't have to tolerate dogs roaming the street biting people, littering everywhere and causing accidents.

And it's no point arguing about this any longer...the process has already started and good for that.

"We are not here to criticise the decisions by the government"

Has Mauritius suddenly become a police state or communist country?

Sometimes the opinions of a minority of people in this country is frightening....

dpapap :

"We are not here to criticise the decisions by the government"

Has Mauritius suddenly become a police state or communist country?

Sometimes the opinions of a minority of people in this country is frightening....

may be you just have to get accustomed to the policies of the island ( even if you do hail from Mauritius but did a stint in the UK or continental Europe)

Priscilla , as a team member of EB knows what she is saying and why she said it.
Just get yourself a business on the island and then start publishing -ve comments and see how you fare !

Freedom of speech is at the core of any democracy and not to be able to question decisions by a government is a dangerous path to go down. The recent revelations in the Mauritian press about certain members of government who have taken liberties has shown that. People had previously chosen not to say anything and now look whats happening...I guess that is the price of keeping quite and assuming that those power are always right. Questioning authority is not a crime or wrong, its the right of every citizen and those questions should help those in office formulate policies based on the needs and wishes of the people it serves.

Criticize your local  govt as much as you want on your own blog BUT not on the fora that are geared for expatriates. Don't jeopardize the business of others when you feel that your freedom of speech entitle you to use any medium.
Do it on your own blog or FB page or what ever you feel like it . It is UNFAIR to put the onus on EB

guys, we are getting off topic.

This topic is very sensible ... I hope the government will consider everyone's opinion and make the right decision.

Todays online L'express: … rev=search

I hear its not just the beach dogs either - the vans are also out in Providence and other villages.

daisymay2 :

Todays online L'express: … rev=search

I hear its not just the beach dogs either - the vans are also out in Providence and other villages.

Great article, the comments clearly show that almost all of those who took the time to comment are fully in favor of the government's action. Surprising that the paper wasn't deluged with comments from the animal rights activists on the island. Maybe those commenting understand that a wholly one-sided approach simply won't work, at least it appears that way.

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