Stray/street dogs in Mauritius

Hi,

This is my first post on here, so hi.

Myself and my partner have been trying to narrow down our search for the best country for us to emigrate to, as we have grown tired of the UK, and would like to move out before starting a family etc.

Mauritius is currently pretty high up on our list, however I have read about something that really concerns me.

I have a pretty bad phobia of dogs, and neither me or my partner are particularly fond of them. I read that there is a stray dog problem in Mauritius, and that sometimes they can attack people. I was just wondering how true and prevalent this is. Would we be able to avoid them if we settled in a remote area, or are there towns and villages where strays are not an issue? I'd just like anyone's opinion and experience please about this.

Thanks in advance.

Hi Ali,

Myself and my husband have moved here from Ireland and we live in Floreal which is the midlands, near Curepipe & Vacoas and I encounter stray dogs all the time and in some areas of Vacoas they hang out near the main supermarket & especially around KFC and all the popular food courts in packs of 5 dogs or more.

We have been here a year and I have yet to see or hear about anyone being attacked by a stray dog (it is a possibility) and the ones I see every day they are mostly scared of humans.

I actually feel sorry for all these dogs, I even witnessed a dog practically being run over by a police motorcycle and the policeman did not even slow down.

So, yes, there are a lot of stray dogs in Curepipe, Vacoas, and a bit less in Floreal. I wouldn’t be able to tell you about other areas like Grand Baie or Tamarin or Flic en Flac...etc..


Mariam

Hi Ali,

Even I have a phobia of Dogs and was initially scared, when I landed here. But,to add to what Mariam has said, they dont tend to bark or chase you unless you are running or provoke them.... Also, they move in packs mostly at nights. Most are quite scared of humans and treated badly.

The ones who are slightly aggressive are the Dogs which are Pets (the so called Pedigree Breeds). Most people who have dogs, put up a warning board on their gates.

So, I would say, it should not be a problem. . . Just come to this Isle and look forward to a wonderful life :D

Cheers,
Musheer

the dogs here aren't an issue in my experience. Why not come here for a trip and experience it all before you decide. I too feel depserately sorry for them, as they look badly treated and malnurished. They are very scared of humans.

Hi! Here the most friendly and relax dogs ever!

hi guys,
you have an organisation to cater for stray dogs, its called MSPCA i think, you can call them, for stray dogs; they're present for the purpose,

cheers,
islander.

Funnily enough I've just got back from 2 days in Grand bay as I'm looking to relocate and settle down with the missus and have a family etc. There's no doubt there are a lot of stray dogs and it can be a little upsetting to us Brits as we're simply not used to it. But I've seen it to varying degrees in most countries I've been to, including Europe. It may have just been me, but none of them looked particularly starved though.

hey guys, if you're coming from abroad, and looking to chase dogs near you, what if you bring an Ultrasonic Dogchaser(LS-977)?

ahaan,lolz,
islander.

Thanks for all the replies, very helpful and reassuring.  I think it might actually be a good thing if I spent time around non vicious dogs for a change.

Islander, that device seems to be the ideal tool for me.  I might look into getting one of those just for piece of mind.  Not to ever use it, but certainly just for reassurance.

Thanks again everyone!

There are thousands of stray dogs in Mauritius, yes thousands! and cats as well.  I have adopted 3 stray cats and 2 stray dogs and also have another dog. We have also fostered 11 dogs and 5 cats until we found homes for them.

It breaks my heart to see these poor creatures, they are often starving and in very poor physical condition.  99.9% of the time they ignore you or run away.  This situation has gotten worse over the 4 years I have been in Mauritius and until the government does something about it it will continue to get worse. The Government recently drastically reduced funding to the MSPCA and they are not in a position to collect strays like they used to. One report says they collected 20,000 strays in 2008 and another 20,000 in 2009 but in 2010 due to funding cuts they only collected 5,000. PAWS also has severe funding problems and cannot pick up dogs any more either.  The situation is desperate for the dogs but should not cause you any real problem if you can manage to ignore these poor starving animals.

There are no bad dogs only bad owners :)

..and sadly there are plenty of bad owners in Mauritius!

Very sadly so markdc. It is going to take a generation at least to get the sterilisation message through.  It is happening but very, very slowly. 

Let's also remember that there are also many animal lovers both Mauritian and expat on this lovely island and we can all help to educate others one at a time.  I just wish we could fix it now and that no animal would have to spend another night on the streets starving and sick.

What is the solution?

Maybe have a fund raising campaign for the MSPCA??
Along the same lines an awareness campaign on sterilization and plight of Dogs. How Dog owners need to treat them, what kind of breeds are alright and how to treat/handle each of them.
The folly of having Pit bulls and Rottweilers who could at times even turn on their masters and are known to be very dangerous around humans.

Cheers,
Musheer

Hi Musheer, I agree with the first part of your statement and trying to do some fund raising would be great.

With regard to your second statement The folly of having Pit bulls and Rottweilers who could at times even turn on their masters and are known to be very dangerous around humans. I respectfully and vehemently disagree, there are no bad dogs only bad owners and some owners teach these breeds and other dogs to be aggressive; well trained, disciplined, exercised and loved dogs of any breed can be wonderful pets.  If you research Rottweilers you will find that they are not naturally aggressive and bad press has very unfairly given them a bad wrap.

I repeat there are no bad dogs only bad owners.

i have once seen an ad in the south of the island:

attention chien mechant, mais maitre plus mechant

english version: beware of dangerous dogs, but master is even more dangerous!


how about a campaign for owners, and adoption?

maybe that can help you jude,
cheers,
islander.

Dogs are a huge problem in Mauritius! Besides the stray dogs, most dog owners let their four-legged friends run around on the streets during the evenings and nights! They take over the streets and the beaches and approach people who pass by. They generally don't attack, but they come up close to you, barking furiously! I live in Pereybère and the dogs here make it impossible to go for a walk after sunset.

But I do hope that you decide to come here anyway Ali, it's a beautiful island. Perhaps you could try cognitive behavioral therapy for your phobia. Cheers!

hi strawb,

did you get the device? how much does it cost? i might buy one, if you happen to bring it here?

cheers,
islander.

Hi Mate,

No, I don't have one. I might consider one though as my wife to be is terrified of dogs. It's all in the mind!

ok, lemme know of the price if you happen to,
i might also be interested,
cheers,
islander.

Stray dogs can be a problem if you have children.

Otherwise, the most dangerous dogs are the ones that have owners. Nearly got bitten by one last week as the owner had left the gate open and the dog was roaming freely; it just came up to me and barked furiously and bit my trousers thrice!

That should not be a deterrent to coming here. :)

I know several expats who adopted stray dogs.

Our office adopted a stray dog, well the stray dog adopted our office, and now we feed him, wash him and play with him. He has been taken to PAWS for the you know what...

Having a pet at the office is a plus especially on a stressful day.

Mariam A :

Having a pet at the office is a plus especially on a stressful day.

Is he particularly good at admin then? :)

and answer phone?

linapascal :

Dogs are a huge problem in Mauritius! Besides the stray dogs, most dog owners let their four-legged friends run around on the streets during the evenings and nights! They take over the streets and the beaches and approach people who pass by. They generally don't attack, but they come up close to you, barking furiously! I live in Pereybère and the dogs here make it impossible to go for a walk after sunset.

But I do hope that you decide to come here anyway Ali, it's a beautiful island. Perhaps you could try cognitive behavioral therapy for your phobia. Cheers!

The last couple of months I've been living in La Preneuse and Tamarin-village (West Coast), and the owners over there are rather scared to let their dogs out on the streets, mostly because they might be caught by the 'Dog Police', and it costs quite a lot to buy them free. In La Preneuse I didn't see many stray dogs - it's absolutely safe to walk to the beach there at night. In Tamarin-village on the other hand I hear a lot of dogs at night, sometimes fighting each other. Since I'm not scared of dogs (I bark louder than them) that doesn't stop me from going to the beach after sunset. In my experience the dogs are indeed affraid of humans. On the other hand: dogs tend to be less affraid of humans who are affraid of them :-( But hey, one of our local friends was badly bitten by a dog when she was six, and is terrified of them, which doesn't stop her from living a happy life in Tamarin-village. A dog phobia really shouldn't stop you from trying this beautiful island.

Maybe I might just be worrying over nothing.  My partner says that even here in the UK there are strays running around in the city centres, but we dont see any because we're away from it all.  Thanks for your response Elewijt, thats really useful to have those 2 place names.  We wouldnt really be wanting to go anywhere crowded or busy, so maybe the less tourist-y kinds of places would be more our kind of thing and maybe be away from too many strays. 

We're torn between a few countries still to move to, but keeping Mauritius on the list - I think we're due a holiday anyway :)

I live at Trou aux Biches and the dog problem is horrendous at nights. Stray dogs combine with owned dogs let out at night to find food or for some other reason bark and fight and run around the neighbourhood keeping people awake. I've spoken to a neighbour with 4 dogs of which 3 are let to roam and one is chained in the yard 24/7 and simply got abused and told "you can't stop a dog barking". Police do sod all. MSPCA have not responded to 3 letters to them. The problem is worst the night before rubbish collections - which is why I think maybe they're let loose to find food. It leaves rubbish everywhere.

The dog problem is a national disgrace and embarrassing that a dog control bill was introduced back in 2000 and now they talk about a bill going back before parliament.

I think if you ask the 2 kids attacked by over 20 dogs at a bus stop in March they're well placed to let you know if the dogs are a problem. Newspaper reports put the number of dogs in Mauritius at 200,000 of which 100,000 are defined as strays.

hi, i have a dog chaser which i bought recently, works well...

although i can find myself with a dog being deaf someday!!

LOL that would be buying new pants :P

islander.

We have had a few altercations with stray dogs. I came accross a family who were bailed up by dogs barking and snarling at them, they were terrified. The only thing I could do was drive my car between them and the dogs and things eventually calmed down. My daughter has been attacked on  a number of occassions by the same small domesticated dog and bitten twice. She now carries a stick when she walks each day. Yes sadly the dogs, both domisticated and stray, are a huge problem here...

hi there,

another note to the blog, i bought my dog chaser for about about a little dollars, it seems to be working! i hope someday someone imports and distributes in mauritius.

innovation helps people in their lives,
kind regards,
islander77.

mempep :

I live at Trou aux Biches and the dog problem is horrendous at nights. Stray dogs combine with owned dogs let out at night to find food or for some other reason bark and fight and run around the neighbourhood keeping people awake. I've spoken to a neighbour with 4 dogs of which 3 are let to roam and one is chained in the yard 24/7 and simply got abused and told "you can't stop a dog barking". Police do sod all. MSPCA have not responded to 3 letters to them. The problem is worst the night before rubbish collections - which is why I think maybe they're let loose to find food. It leaves rubbish everywhere.

The dog problem is a national disgrace and embarrassing that a dog control bill was introduced back in 2000 and now they talk about a bill going back before parliament.

I think if you ask the 2 kids attacked by over 20 dogs at a bus stop in March they're well placed to let you know if the dogs are a problem. Newspaper reports put the number of dogs in Mauritius at 200,000 of which 100,000 are defined as strays.

Hi Mempep
I really understand what you are saying and feel sorry that you are disturbed so badly. I have been in a similar situation and it really is very frustrating Have you contacted the  environmental police? Have you considered taking out a private prosecution against your neighbours and the four dogs?You need to get other neighbours who are also disturbed to back you up and make a declaration to the police. I am an animal lover and have dogs and cats.I am pleased to say that apart from the occasional barking at other dogs that pass the gate my dogs dont disturb anybody. Good luck.

I agree. stray dogs are everywhere causing problems in the island.

Fell sorry for those poor animals, but they must be exterminated as they can carry rabies. One bite, you are gone.

Dogs are supposed not to have rabbies in Mauritius! :/ That's why the authorities have such drastic rules for the importation of our own dogs!

Rabina :

I agree. stray dogs are everywhere causing problems in the island.

Fell sorry for those poor animals, but they must be exterminated as they can carry rabies. One bite, you are gone.

There are no rabies in Mauritius. Also most of the sad, pathetic starving dogs dont bite or attack.They are just trying to survive.

There are certaily a lot of stray dogs every where on the Island. However there has no biting incidents at least in my knowledge in the past one year and half. In a lot of cases though most of the dogs roaming on the streets are owned by people.

STRAY DOGS ARE KNOWN to have the risk of developing rabies and spread rabies to other creatures.

stray dogs can easily spread deadly diseases.

children have been attacked in the streets.

although i am an animal lover and loves meat, i would still ask for the culling of all those stray dogs.

stray dogs are not vaccinated against rabies. these dogs can be biten by rats or other mammals that can carry the deadly rabies virus.

to say that stray dogs have not attacked children in mauritius is not true. recently, two children have been biten by stray dogs.

i still believe there are too many stray dogs in mauritius and i am always fearful to go near them as they can bite you or attack you or sppread their deadly diseases.

i am always careful when there there are packs of stray dogs around. thanks god, i am leaving by xmas. i feel sorry for the locals who have to put up with those stary dogs.

the solution, i think, is to destroy them. otherwise, they will become uncontrolable.

Hello everybody!

I've never heard that dogs have rabies in Mauritius, I have five dogs at home and just adopted another little one, so. ;)

Regards,
Harmonie.

I repeat there are no rabies in Mauritius.Yes there have been some recent attacks on children by dogs, but they were owned by sombody and were not strays.This happens all over the world and not just here.The stray dog problem is massive and needs urgent attention, but sterilisation and animal education is the best solution not just mass extermination or culling.

Stray dogs attacking people is greatly rare, even improbable to occur; as they are used to interaction with people; their main goals are to search for food and sleep; they are usually very fearful.

The only ones that can be dubbed as dangerous are the one who are embedded or enclosed into a cage or something and snatched the right of human interaction by their owners, and they always feel threatened when we get into their marked zone whereby they become aggressive (but these are in no way stray/street dogs without owners). These ones shall never be let out in the public road.

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