So there are, officially, 64,704 stray dogs in Bucharest. We didn’t count them all personally, but the Autoritatea pentru Supravegherea si Protectia Animalelor (ASPA) did. The margin of error is -/+10 per cent.
More worrying than the actual number of dogs however is the fact that so little is being done to get them off the streets. Last year, just 3,500 dogs were rounded up, of which – get this – more than half were returned straight back to where they were picked up. Around 1,400 were adopted (and then immediately put back on the streets, no doubt), and just were 46 put down: yep, 46, out of 64,000. An additional 6,512 strays were sterilised.
All of which confirms what we have long said: there is a large minority of people in Bucharest who actually want the city’s streets to be blighted by these dogs. We long ago gave up any notion that something will ever be done about them, especially as many of those who perpetuate their presence appear to be young people. The idea that it’s only mad old women who feed the dogs is wrong.
More (much more) on the stray dog issue in Life passim.