Bangalore leaders discuss welfare companion animals

Oct 5:  MARS Petcare, the world’s leading pet food company, hosted a second of its the series, Mars Petcare Thought Leadership Seminar on October 5th, 2021, that aims to recognize and address issues around the welfare of companion animals (dogs and cats) in India. The first panel discussion in Hyderabad, was on State of Animal welfare with regard to strays: current situation & what are the steps taken by the Government & NGO’s and the second seminar in Bengaluru was on challenges regarding better cities for pets and pet registration. The Chief Guest was Mr. D. Randeep, Special Commissioner, Health & IT, Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike.

Few of the eminent panelists included the following –

  • Dr. Chinny Krishna, Founder of Blue Cross of India
  • Dr. Shinde, Jt. Director, Additional Commissioner, Dept of Animal Husbandary
  • Prof. H.D Narayanaswamy the Vice Chancellor of Karnataka Veterinary, Animal and Fishery Sciences University
  • Priya Chetty-Rajagopal, Founder, CJ Memorial Trust
  • Dr. Utpal Tatu, Professor, Indian Institute of Science
  • Dr. Pawan Kumar, M.V. Sc (Surgery and Radiology); Cessna Lifeline Veterinary Healthcare
  • Dr.Narendra.R, President Karnataka Vet Council
  • Dr. Rubina Mondal, Postdoctoral researcher at IISER Kolkata, Winner of Waltham Foundation Awards for a study on stray dogs and shelters in India
  • Ms. Sudha Narayanan, Founder Trustee of CARE
  • Ms. Shiela Rao, Trustee, CUPA

The event aimed to bring all animal welfare stakeholders together in order to discuss currents gaps in the welfare of companion animals and look at synergies and partnerships between the government, NGOs, Corporates and Individuals. There is also the need to encourage adoption of Indies and #adoptdon’tshop attitude among citizens of India. Panelists said potential pet parents should look beyond coveted dog breeds to accept stray companion animals with similar love and respect. The idea was also to ensure that stray dogs and cats are wanted, cared for and welcome in the society, with support provided to community feeders, animal shelters and encouraging short-term fostering of injured and animals in need of care. The panelists also discussed pet registration as a mandatory proposition and its positive impact on pets and pet parents.

Ganesh Ramani, General Manager, MARS Petcare, said: “MARS Petcare believes in creating a better world for pets and has undertaken adoption drives for strays as well as feeding activities across the country. As part of its organizational purpose of creating a better world for pets, MARS Petcare is committed to bringing government, NGO and individuals together to find high, impact, sustainable solutions to reducing the number of unwelcome and uncared for dogs and cats in India; and creating awareness to increase adoptions of these animals in forever homes. This seminar was the second in the series bringing stakeholders on a common platform to find solutions to improve the lives of our furry companions, and the pet parents.” “A number of state and city governments are now looking at making pet registration and licensing mandatory, this will ensure responsible pet parenting among people who adopt pets and reduce instances of cruelty and abandonment. Pet registration will also ensure that pets are vaccinated on time and their health needs are taken care of”, he added.

Mr. Randeep.D, Special Commissioner, Health & IT, Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike: “It is of utmost importance to inculcate a sense of compassion and belongingness among people for our stray companion animals. There is a need to educate people and create awareness among all citizens about their welfare. The Karnataka government and BBMP are looking at making pet registration and licensing mandatory, ensuring pet parent’s commitment to the wellbeing of their pets as well as encourage ethical & legal breeding practices; and BBMP is committed to making Bengaluru a friendly and compassionate city for pets. I am glad that MARS Petcare has taken the initiative to create dialogue and discussion for making lives better for pets and stray companion animals by bringing all stakeholders together for these discussions.”

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