Similar to Spay Day, our objective is to maintain a healthy dog population in our urban areas and prevent unwanted litters. Our stray dog population control programme responds to demands by the public when a pack of dogs become a nuisance. In Lilongwe we do not have a significant number of stray dogs, rather dogs are allowed to roam by irresponsible pet owners.
Now running for several years, this project was initially funded by the William and Charlotte Parks Foundation grant, with additional help from Humane Society International. The LSPCA received training in methods of how to capture stray dogs and with our vet team we now offer a capture/spay/neuter/release services when called for. We are the referral organisation for the Lilongwe City Council to assist in dog population management and following the Government's forward thinking policy to end the previous policy of shooting stray animals.
The rationale behind dog population control: If LSPCA or the Government culled dogs instead of sterilising, those dogs which are not culled will continue to breed at a very high rate; one unsterilized female can produce 30 to 45 puppies in a year. These puppies will then breed and move to surrounding neighbourhoods where there is often a large source of food waste. Furthermore, in terms of the spread of rabies, if a vaccinated dog population was controlled by culling but a food source was still available, non-vaccinated dogs would start to occupy this territory and thus rabies would begin to spread to neighbouring vacant territories which poses an increased risk of rabies being transmitted to humans through bites from unvaccinated dogs. So if we sterilise, vaccinate and release dogs, we slowly decrease stray dog population, rather than opting for a quick fix to reduce the stray dog population which is not effective in long term dog population control and can increase the spread of rabies.