Who will take care of stray dogs on military bases?

Many soldiers are turning to animal rights organizations in order to find a solution to the problem of stray dogs on military bases. Since most of the dogs aren't vaccinated, the soldiers fear being infected with diseases and attacked. The soldiers also are concerned about the dogs’ fate.
Photo Credit: Facebook/Channel 2 News

The issue of stray dogs in IDF bases has become an epidemic. Many soldiers turn to animal care organizations on a daily basis, mainly to the Let the Animals Live organization, seeking assistance or an answer to the problem of stray dogs roaming around military bases. The soldiers are concerned about the dogs’ fate as well as health violations and being infected by diseases.

Yael Arkin, CEO of Let the Animals Live, said: "When the army wants to solve a problem, they know how to. We can't let the situation go on as it is any longer, we call the IDF the most moral army in the world, this should count towards animal rights as well."

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In a message that reached Let the Animals Live, a soldier in the West Bank said: "We have 7 dogs roaming our base. Recently, they started acting aggressively and I fear someone will try to harm them. There was already a case of a dog attacking a soldier who then shot him."

Another soldier serving in Southern Israel said: "There are two dogs in my base in really poor condition. The female looks like she recently gave birth, probably all of her puppies died from the cold." Soldiers are also turning to Facebook and social media seeking a solution.

Arkin explains that: "The stray dogs make it to military bases because of the high availability of food and water. When they're not fixed, they also reproduce fast and tend to act more aggressively, which only makes the problem worse. The IDF has a measly budget to capture dogs but that's just the tip of the iceberg. Sadly, every so often there is an operation to reduce the stray dog population, either by poisoning or shooting them. We've suggested a project called 'Fix and Return,' a humane solution that is popular in most countries and may reduce the magnitude of the problem. But in order to do so, we need the full cooperation of the IDF."

The IDF Spokesperson's Unit released a statement: "The problem of stray dogs is spreading throughout the country and some of these dogs find their way to military bases. The IDF has laws and protocols that regulate how to handle the situation according to the law while trying to prevent as much discomfort to the dogs as possible. The IDF cooperates regularly with the various organizations that handle the situation and invests many resources into fix the problem."


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