Thinking of adding a furry friend to your home?
Thousands of animals in Dubai are looking for homes. Here’s how you can adopt one, or two, or three…but remember, they’re for life!
The Bin Kitty Collective
As the name suggests, this popular Facebook group arranges permanent and temporary homes for cats and kittens. They also hold regular adoption days, are also a source of valuable advice for cat owners and members do sterling work looking after Dubai’s stray cat population.
You could end up saving a cat like Maximus (left), who was found under a cat, weighing just 380 grammes. Cat lover Victoria Khafizova rushed him to the vets, where the tiny kitten underwent two operations and had to be fed by tube.
Almost a year later, the 11-month-old cat is healthy and happy (below) and Victoria, from Uzbekistan, says she wouldn’t be without him.
Her advice to prospective pet owners: “I would say to treat a cat as a human, to think hundred times before adopting and to make sure you are able to take care of a cat not only when its small and cute, but be able to handle other situations such as age, health issue, character.
“And for sure you must be emotionally attached. A pet is not a toy – it’s a huge responsibility.”
Follow the Bin Kitty Collective on Facebook.
The Animal Project
Promoting kindness and re-homing rescued and unwanted pets is the remit of this animal welfare group. They promote TNR (trap, neuter, release) of stray cats to help reduce the number of felines on the streets and keep colonies happy. If you see a stray with a tipped ear, that’s usually a sign they’ve been ‘fixed.’
Head to the The Animal Project on Facebook
Pooches of all shapes and sizes find their owners during their stay at this not-for-profit shelter. Even if you can’t commit to giving a dog a home, sponsors for dogs and kennels are always welcome, and start from AED 370 (including VAT).
Call 04 887 8739 or 050 274 1949. Open Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday 9am-1pm. www.facebook.com/k9friendsdubai
Adopt My Pets UAE
Find good homes for abandoned animals with the help of this friendly bunch. It’s 1,200-plus members also post heartwarming before and after photos of their adoptions.
Red Paw Foundation
This non-profit organisation is registered with the UAE government under the umbrella of the Emirates Animal Welfare Society, so you know you’re in safe hands – or paws, even. The volunteer-led group believes in adopting, not shopping for pets and holds adoption days at weekends. They invite you to “discover love in its purest form – four paws and fur” by checking out their cat-alouge of potential adoptees on Facebook.
Find the Red Paw Foundation on Facebook
Helping Hands for the Smaller Paws of the UAE
Good things come in small furry packages. Through this community of little animals lovers, rodents, rabbits, reptiles and other smaller pets are adopted and knowledge is shared.
Helping Hands for Smaller Paws on Facebook
Cracking down on cruelty
Tough legislation will hopefully cut down on the number of pets being abandoned or neglected.
His Highness Sheikh Khalifa Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, President of the UAE, has issued a decree penalising animal cruelty by up to a year in prison or a fine of AED 200,000.
Federal Law 18, which was issued late 2016, punishes people found guilty of causing harm, suffering, discomfort, mistreatment or any form of physical harm to animals. Laws announced in 2017 also ban the private ownership of wild animals in the UAE and orders dog owners to keep their pets on a leash.
Finally, selling pets without a licence is also a criminal offence in the UAE – another great reason not to buy animals!