November 2008

CAIRO // The haunting sound of barking dogs and screeching cats followed by gunshots throughout the night is a constant reminder of the struggle undertaken by animal rights activists in the country. The killing of stray animals is a common practice in Egypt but both the government and grass-roots movements are putting a push on to make life better for dogs and cats.

Last month, the World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE) held its quadrennial animal welfare conference in Cairo. Delegates passed several resolutions, including continuing to set standards for humane methods for controlling stray dog populations and free-roaming cats.

Amin Abaza, the Egyptian minister of agriculture, told the conference his nation "strongly supports the OIE's work in animal welfare". The backing of the government is being supported by one activist who has started working with children to educate them about treating animals properly.

Amina Abaza, the founding director of the Society for the Protection of Animal Rights in Egypt (SPARE), is visiting schools in Cairo to try to change the way people think about dogs and cats.


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