Stray Animals on Roads: Religion vs Practical Solutions

Stray Animals on Roads: Religion vs Practical Solutions

The problem of stray animals on the roads without any owners or proper food arrangements is a menace in most developing countries like India. Part of the issue is also related to the religious sentiments which consider cow as holy animal for the Hindus and taking life of others is not considered a good thing.

Two Sides of the Coin

There are arguments for both sides of the coin. Firstly these stray animals cause a menace to traffic and they also get hurt and die a painful death on the roads. Cows starve from hunger and eat all sorts of polythene and plastics thus getting sick. So some people say that they should be slaughtered and used for beef, leather etc which will be an easy way out.

stray cows

The other side suggests that we cannot do so as cow is a religious animal and also animals have rights even if dogs etc. Of course they are not able to suggest some solution though there are some good gaushalas and vet homes where the animals are cared for. So let us take a look from both aspects as well as the religious perspective.

stray dogs

The Religious Side vs Practical Side

Firstly though it is true that religion cannot form the basis of all solutions yet there are many valid points. For example just see the statistics of stray human beings on streets. With all due regards the word stray is not used in sense of fun or disrespect but because they are abandoned by society and dont have a home or arrangement for food.

They belong to different categories like ultra poor, beggars, mentally sick people, old people thrown out of houses etc. So can be think of slaughtering them just to make our streets beautiful? Do they have equal right to live?

You might say it is not good to compare humans to animals but that is where the root of the problem lies. We the so called superior species have already misused Nature and its resources more than necessary as if it was created for us. All forms of living life have equal right on this Earth and its resources. So the solution is certainly not killing them or exporting them to countries where religious sentiments are not rigid.

So what is the solution?

Yet having said that we need to find solution. The solution lies at the local level and it will depend on the animals under consideration, with each one having a unique solution not only per animal but also as per location. It is not easy to suggest a universal solution but some suggestions are as follows.

  • As far as cows are concerned, there are hundreds of examples where people have started commercially profitable ventures from stray cows and used their products like urine etc for medicinal purposes. ¬†One such example of commercial venture from stray cows is here. (click on link)
  • Even if they are considered holy, what is the problem? If you can promote religious places to earn money, you can promote gaushalas also as places of religious tourism and earn money and use it for welfare of cows and other animals. People in countries like India can donate lot of money, if they can do so to fraudulent Babas (not meant for all spiritual leaders though) they can surely do for innocent living animals
  • There is so much intelligence in countries like India where they can use even kabad/raddi (used old items) for some work, everyone can come up with some solution

Of course apart from that some measures can be adopted which are bit strict like

  • Any pet owner who throws pet out of house has to be fined/punished. He should either take care till end or put them to sleep
  • Vaccination to prevent further breeding or sterilization
  • If an animal is undergoing too much agony, it should be killed but most painless method

Surely by following these simple examples much good can be done for them.

A few lines dedicated to this issue

We agree we cause you discomfort and inconvenience for a while

May be to see us on the roads is not proper as per your style

Yet we have life, we have feelings, we feel the pleasure and the pain

You people used us for milk and food, for your own ends and gain

Now you do not even want to see us, when we are fragile and old

The world is like this, it only values the precious things like gold

We are not surprised you cannot take care of your parents so aged

How you enjoy keeping us animals in chains and in the zoos caged

Remember we the animals came on this earth much before than you did

Dont you remember how overjoyed you were when you saw us as a kid

Now that we have grown old and dont have a place to go, what should we do

Find a solution for us for even your time will come, same thing you will go through

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