Community Mobilization in Ecuador Reduces Stray Dog Population

SPCA International staff recently had the opportunity to attend a community-driven TNR (Trap, Neuter/Spay, Release) event in Ecuador. It was truly amazing to see a group of volunteers give their time and talent to care for and sterilize over 50 stray dogs. These dogs live along a dangerous highway in Ecuador. The highway winds through the mountains outside of Quito and is home to dozens of stray dogs. The people who live here do what they can to care for the dogs. Many people provide food and water or have taken strays into their homes. However, with so many stray dogs, puppies continue to be born. That is why TNR is so effective. The community can’t provide a home for every dog along the highway. However, they are working together to reduce the dog population. This approach will keep the existing animals safe and healthy. Many dogs have learned to walk along the shoulder of the road, but others aren’t as lucky. In fact, as we were out locating dogs, we encountered a dog that had been recently hit by a car. Unfortunately, that pup didn’t make it. By reducing the number of strays, fewer dogs will suffer like this. Our partner organization TerrAnimal Ecuador hopes to hold several more TNR events in this area to reach the full stray dog population. We are certain they will accomplish this because their work is truly based on grassroots mobilization. In addition to working with community volunteers, they also provided education at the local school and with community members.