An animal protection organization, Animals Australia, has reported that animals have been left starving and abandoned on the streets in Indonesia, especially in Bali and on the Gili Islands.
“In many instances, animals who brought in an income for their owners are now rendered ‘worthless’, as the global tourism industry comes to a standstill. Bali and the Gili Islands have been especially impacted by this, given the huge reliance of their economies on tourism,” Animals Australia spokesperson Louise Bonomi said in a statement on Wednesday.
“As we saw borders closing rapidly and international travel grind to a halt, it was very clear to us that the situation for animals would deteriorate rapidly, especially for captive and working animals whose care and upkeep is dependent on tourist income,” added Bonomi.
The organization announced that it had provided critical support to animal protections groups in Bali, Jakarta, Lombok and the Gili Islands.
The organization works together with the Jakarta Animal Aid Network (JAAN) to improve the welfare of domestic animals, wildlife and marine life in various parts of Indonesia through the relocation of animals at risk.
As many as 150 stray dogs in Lombok have been fed by a local NGO, Street Dog Support, which provides dog shelters in the region. In Gili, Animals Australia cooperates with local NGO Gili Eco Trust to assist local groups on the islands in providing carriage owners with food and veterinary care for horses, as well as food for local cats and birds that are kept as pets on the islands.
The Australian-led effort has granted free emergency care to vulnerable animals at Udayana University Veterinary Hospital and assisted the Villa Kitty animal rescue foundation with street feeding, rescue, shelter administration and veterinary care for nearly 300 cats and kittens in Bali. It also funds the legal advocacy and anti-cruelty work of the Bali Animal Defenders the Jakarta Post reported.
“We have also found dogs that were most likely abandoned by their owners and left in public places such as beaches and vacant land. This has created new problems in Bali, especially as rabies is endemic to the island,” said veterinarian Sasa Vernandes, Animals International’s Indonesian team leader.