Living in Taipei city, I'd have to say this situation has
improved a bit over the years. Just a bit. I used to run into 'tumor' dogs very often on the streets, but now, I believe they're incinerated regularly by the dog squad. I would venture to guess that the countryside or areas outside Taipei still see their fair share of diseased and mangey hounds. And yes, this is a shocking state of affairs considering the affluence of the Taiwan people.
I feel like ripping my heart out every time I see boxes of kitties and puppies at the markets because I know, that even if they are taken home, they're likely to NEVER lead a decent life or be taken care of properly by their owners. They're either caged up, put on the balcony for their existence, never taken for walks, rarely played with, beaten for doing doggy or kitty things and generally considered a nuisance until they're dumped in the countryside as one poster mentioned above.
I have rescued at least a dozen kitties from the streets, and a handful of dogs and found them good (western) homes, and the two cats I have now were also refugee kittens, and they are the sweetest wee wees in the world. I would seriously consider taking in a few more cats, but I know I just can't...
I do not understand why one would want to buy a pet in this town when there are so many adorable abandoned ones who should have a chance to flourish in a nice home. And those bastards at the markets should be strung up by their balls for taking part in the further abuse of our furry friends by letting them go to just anyone
. In the US, you are screened by the Humane society when you want to adopt a pet, there isn't even a Humane society IN Taiwan...See: Humane Society International Supports Animal Welfare in Taiwan
Please, people, if you feel the need to adopt a pet, go to Grandma Nitti's and ask Rainbow or anyone there, she usually has a few around that people have dumped on her when they've found them on the streets, etc. The main reason I support Nitti's as a patron at all, is because I know she does a lot for the stray population of Taipei.
The Taipei Abandoned Animal Rescue Foundation
was founded by a Taipei American School girl named Mina Sharpe
who thought that the situation was so disheartening here that she actually did
something about it. I don't know if this young lady has graduated and moved back to America or not, but she did a great service to the domestic animals of Taiwan by getting this organisation going. SHE is a young heroine who is also deserving of a Taiwan APRC, but she probably doesn't want one...
Horrible treatment of pets doesn't just stop with dogs and cats. Just a week or so ago, I found a box of dying/dead hamsters in the park on Shi-Da Rd. There were about eight in the box, it was boiling hot, and someone had just dumped them there. It's just idiotic that the person who dumped them didn't even bother to try to give them to a pet shop.
And overt your eyes if you go to Snake Alley, if not for the snakes, for the poor Macaqs, the native Taiwan monkeys.
I try to make sense of it all by reasoning that in general (with a few exceptions) Chinese people do not care for animals because their people suffered so much through the ages and animals (any kind) were either used for work or eaten, so bonds were generally not formed with pets as in Western countries. But this situation in a "modern" society like Taiwan is extremely backwards, and I believe the only way to change things is through education. So, if anyone out there teaches kids, I surely hope that you're making inroads daily about the humane treatment of animals.
I'm practically 'et up' now by this whole issue, while one of my gutter-rescued kitties, lazes on my feet.