History and Overview of Street Dog Care
Street Dog Care (SDC) was founded in February 2009 by Andrea Bringmann. With the motto, “Let us work together to give all beings a better life,” SDC functions to provide medical care, vaccinations, rehabilitation, and sterilization to Boudha’s street dog population. Working primarily within the Boudha community, SDC has provided service to approximately 4,000 dogs since its founding. SDC often provides medical care on the streets, and runs a weekly Dog Care Camp at the Boudha Stupa. Boudha community members, as well as volunteers and tourists, bring in street dogs for on-site medical care. For animals in need of long-term care, we provide service at our Street Dog Care Centre. Our Dog Care Centre, located just outside of Boudha Stupa, was donated in 2012 by the owners of G-cafe’ a well known Restaurant in the community. The Centre houses up to 35 dogs.
SDC creates community and social value. Over the last 7 years SDC has become an integral part of Boudha’s vibrant community. Most community members know and appreciate our service, and we have created opportunities for community participation. Often community members assist during the weekly Care Camp. Boudha is a mainly Buddhist community and many SDC staff and volunteers are also practicing Buddhists. SDC is knowledgeable of, sensitive to, and respectful of the Buddhist faith and Boudha’s culture. This allows SDC to provide animal welfare work in alignment with the values and doctrines, a very significant aspect to creating community support and appreciation for a small NGO.
SDC, essentially, has made Boudha’s street dogs family members. Staff and volunteers, as well as many community members, know the street dogs by name. In addition to offering medical care, SDC and community supporters ensure Boudha’s dogs maintain a good quality of life. We provide water, food, blankets, sweaters, baths, hugs, love, and other necessities ensuring the dogs are comfortable, happy, and well socialized.
SDC began as the Saturday Camp at the Stupa, grew to include the first Dog Centre located in Paika near Kopan and housing up to 10 dogs, and is now the Dog Centre located in Boudha and housing up to 35 dogs. SDC has grown entirely by the donations of generous donors. SDC receives no government support.
SDC’s mission is to provide care for the dogs who are currently suffering. We are focused on ending the suffering of street dogs in cases like broken bones, tumors, skin problems, handicapped dogs. Everybody is getting a chance as we are also a No-Kill centre. Furthermore, we are located in a Buddhist community and there are cultural elements we are respecting. An Animal Birth Control (ABC) is not our main aim, but we sterilize specially the female dogs passing through our centre.
Impact of Street Dog Care’s work
Boudha street dogs are now healthier due to SDC’s work. Furthermore, SDC’s work has changed Boudha’s attitude towards street dogs. Since SDC’s annual rabies camp, weekly Saturday camp, and Dog Centre, Boudha now views the dogs as “community” dogs and many households and shop owners now feed the street dogs and are friendly to the dogs. The attitude of dogs as a menace and fear of dogs is decreasing.