For the Love of Dogs

It’s heartbreaking to see how some of the dogs are treated on this island. Many are abandoned, some beaten, still others are caged in enclosures that don’t permit them space to move and play. Some are voraciously hungry, rabid, crazed. In the early mornings, they compete with roosters and chickens over first dibs at the offerings on the ground; who will get first crack at the measly pickings – grains of rice, slices of banana, a cracked biscuit.Jpeg

The mangy ones, often female with teats drooping, desperate to feed their young, can be seen scratching and scraping through piles of debris or ripping open plastic bags of rotting trash.

Years ago, local organizations were set up to care for many of these Bali street dogs. BAWA. BARC. They take in stray dogs, care for them and feed them; vets vaccinate them, DSC02249-001tend to their medical needs. Expats are invited to adopt from their kennels – rather than from breeders. Many do.

But what to do with those that are abandoned – by the side of a road, in a rice field, on the beach, in an alley?

DSC02244A new neighbor and her daughter were walking down a rice field path the other day, when they spotted puppies. FOUR puppies. What to do? Well, with nobody in sight, their hearts opened wide. They carried the pups home.

And now, while looking for adoptive ‘parents’ (ie expats) for at least half the litter, M & S are providing food, water, warmth and a garden for them to frolic in.DSC02211

There IS hope, signs of change and progress. I’ve seen Balinese kids and adults walking their well-groomed dogs on a leash. And I’ve seen a few buying dog food at the supermarket and pet shops. May it rub off on those Balinese who don’t yet appreciate the long-term deleterious effects of their behavior towards animals.

Excuse me, I hear the little squirts squealing… I’m off to give them some home-grown TLC.




This is Malu... Indonesian for 'shy' ;)
This is Malu… Indonesian for ‘shy’ 😉



  1. Something that really upset me in Asia was the care-less attitude towards pets. The cow may be sacred in some lands, however dogs and cats seem to have no home, roam the streets eating bad food and end up having litter after litter – to the detriment of the female animal and the environment. Thanks for bringing this to our attention. It’s good to know there is change happening.

  2. and those horrid men who go about with nets catching them up for the human meat trade – I read some horrific article where the dogs where still alive when they were skinned. ( I’m pretty certain that some of the satay I ate during our sojourn there was dog, it certainly didn’t taste like chicken or pork) I saw them once in our gang – trying to catch all the dogs without collars on. I think the worst sight I saw on Bali was a dog literally knawing away at its own flesh – I can only imagine that he was so infested with mange and the itching so tortuous, that the poor animal was doing anything that it could to relieve it. I’ve seen some terrible dog cruelty here in Spain but I’m sad to say that Bali still tops it when it comes to its gung-ho attitude to animal welfare 😦

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