What to do if I find an injured dog


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In Mexico City it is common to see ads from people who offer a reward to find their dogs. What is not so common is to find lost dogs wandering the streets. You may believe that it is best to contact an animal protection organization to take care of the dog, but Georgina Molina, of the Animal Rescue Association, thinks differently. "We must all be dog rescuers, not just associations," he tells Verne via telephone. "The moment you find a lost dog, you are automatically responsible for their well-being."

Astrid Mues, from the organization Perros Perdidos MX, agrees. "We ask people not to be indifferent because just like us, dogs feel a lot of anguish and fear when they are lost," he says in a telephone interview. "If they don't get help, they usually get serious injuries or are run over." She and Molina, representatives of two of the main animal rescue organizations in Mexico City, explain the steps to follow when you find a lost or abandoned dog.

1. Try to grab it or attract it to you: The first step is to move the dog away from a dangerous place and avoid running away. "You can approach him slowly and let him smell you or you can give him something to eat," says Molina. In these situations, dogs tend to be very nervous, but it is rare that they attack, "says Mues." If they feel threatened they can growl or show their teeth but almost never bite, "he says." Dogs usually attack to protect their territory. and when they are lost they are not in their territory ”.

If the dog is very aggressive or you don't know how to play dogs, you can ask a friend who has more experience interacting with them for help. In case the animal is in a very dangerous and / or difficult to access place, Mues recommends contacting the Animal Rescue Unit Mexico. This organization moves the dog away from the risk zone, but you will have to take care of it later. You can also call 911 to ask for help from the Animal Brigade of the Ministry of Public Security, but due to the high demand for their services, the waiting time could be longer.

2. Review it: Once out of the danger zone, look for the dog's contact information. This is usually found on the back of your plate. Mues recommends that owners write a phone number on the inside of the necklace in case they lose the plate while they are lost.

Some dogs have tracking chips under the skin. These are found with a brand or number tattooed almost always in the groin of the right side. The chips make the dog trackable by GPS and / or contain the owner's information. It is best to take it to a veterinary clinic with access to this system. Most have it or can channel another enrolled to the program, explains Mues. You should also check the physical appearance of the dog for injuries, fractures or diseases.

3. Take it to the vet: Both experts recommend taking the dog with a veterinarian as soon as possible. "Doctors can tell you quickly if the dog has any infection, injury or fracture," says Mues. It can also detect signs of abuse or neglect. "Sometimes people believe that because the dog is dirty or has wounds, it is because it has been mistreated," he says. "But dogs in this City can get dirty and hurt very quickly." The veterinarian can also give you vaccines and medicines to prevent contagion to other dogs.

4. Contact the owner: If you run with luck and the dog has identification, you should contact the owner, but first it is better to take it to the veterinarian. This way, it will be easier for you and him or her to meet you for the return. If there are indications of abuse, Molina recommends asking the owners for vaccination cards, veterinarian contact or recent photos of the dog to make sure the owners really take care of him. "In most cases, a bad owner will have no interest in recovering his dog, but you can ask for those documents if you have doubts," he says.

5. Give him a temporary home: You probably don't find dog owners immediately or someone willing to adopt it. You will have to take it home for a while and if that is not possible, ask a friend for asylum or take him to a pension. “Many people believe that associations have shelters with a lot of capacity, but our space and resources are very limited,” explains Molina. "That's why we always ask the person who finds him to take care of him while we find him a permanent home."

6. Disseminate information: Social networks have made the task of spreading photographs of lost dogs very easy. Both Animal Rescue and Lost Dogs MX have tens of thousands of followers on Facebook and Twitter, which helps make information about dogs more widely available. "It is best to photograph the dog from various angles and with an object such as a shoe or chair to offer a better idea of ​​its size," says Mues.

The representative of Lost Dogs MX also recommends leaving printed photos with information at veterinary and local clinics. "If they post ads on the posts without permission it may constitute an administrative offense," he explains. "The best thing is to distribute them in establishments or through the networks."

7. Adopt it or help an association to find a new owner: If you cannot find the owners, you must find a new home for the dog or adopt it. "When you rescue a dog you can have it in your care for five hours or five years, these things cannot be predicted," says Mues. The associations can help you spread the images of the dog to find someone interested in adopting it if you can't take care of it or you already have too many dogs What to keep

What does the Animal Brigade of the CDMX do?

It is the arm of the capital's SSP that can help you rescue a dog in a risk zone, such as a busy avenue. Its officers transport the animal to a veterinary clinic. If the dog has contact information, the office notifies the owners of its location. In cases where there is no identification or nobody claims it within a period of 10 days, the animal is given for adoption through an animal protection association.

If the dog bit a person or is considered dangerous, the Brigade could sacrifice it on the recommendation of veterinarians, but this is never the first option, a representative of the Auxiliary Police told Verne. In cases of mistreatment or abandonment of a dog or cat inside a house or building, the Environmental and Land Management Office of the CDMX should be called.

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You may want to help an injured dog, but it can't be done in any way or it won't let you

If you walk down the street you find a injured dog that wanders alone and there is no person around it, it is probably a lost or abandoned dog, and its owners should be looking for it.

If the dog looks healthy and does not have an aggressive attitude, you can try to approach him. You should keep in mind that an abandoned dog is disoriented and is very likely to panic easily and run away if you try to touch it.

Therefore, you should approach very slowly and avoid making sudden movements. Talk to him in a soft tone and offer him water or some food. You will see that the dog will gradually approach as he feels more secure.

When I'm near you try hold it on the collar, if you have it, and tie it with a leash or rope.

What to do with an injured and abandoned dog

If the dog is injured or ill, or appears aggressive, it is advisable not to approach and call the authorities to come and pick it up. But if you want to give it first aid you must know how to manipulate it, so that the animal does not suffer any damage nor do you end up injured.

If the dog has one identification plate, in most cases the name of the animal and a contact phone number are recorded, so you can call immediately, as surely your worried owner will answer you.

On some latest generation boards no names or recorded phones appear, but rather a QR code that, using your smartphone, you can scan and then access the information of the dog and its owner to warn of its loss.

Another option is to call the Police, the Civil Guard or the City Council, as the owner of the dog may have already given notice of his loss. In addition, local authorities have microchip readers and if the animal carries one, the owners do not delay in finding out the whereabouts of their pet.

If the injured or lost dog has no microchip or identification data, you have some options left. For example, contacting local protectors to find out if someone has reported their disappearance.

You can also take care of the dog temporarily, until its owner appears or you find a replacement home. You can place posters in veterinary clinics or businesses in the area where you found it.

Offer your home and do all the necessary procedures to adopt it. It will surely be the beginning of a long and endearing friendship.