Stray dogs in Quezon City will soon become salutary members of the community, as the Quezon City Veterinary Service (QCVD) has begun training them as service dogs.
According to the QCVD report, the city rescues up to 57 dogs a day, including those abandoned by their owners. All are housed and listed as candidates for rehabilitation and adoption to become family pets of QC citizens, emotional support dogs or even explosive detection dogs.
“Before training them, our vets ensure rescued animals undergo a full assessment, health check and even a temperament test. It is up to us to determine if a dog is suitable as a companion animal or as a community service dog,” said Mayor Joy Belmonte.
Each dog will undergo a three-day observation and Safety Assessment for Handling (SAFER) test which identifies the dog’s comfort level with restraint and touch , reaction to new experiences, including movement and sound stimuli, bite inhibition, behavior around food and toys, and level of excitement towards other dogs.
They will also be screened for common diseases such as parvovirus, distemper, transmissible venereal tumor, scabies and parasitism. Only healthy dogs will qualify for the rehabilitation and adoption program.
Likewise, dogs that pass the assessment satisfactorily are put up for immediate adoption and some are further trained as emotional support and community service dogs and undergo training in basic behavior, obedience and socialization.
“Since the establishment of the QC Animal Care and Adoption Center in November, the city has already partnered with the Quezon City Police District and Fire Protection Bureau. These agencies will be the first recipients of selected protected dogs which they will then train as drug, bomb-sniffing and rescue dogs,” the mayor added.
According to city veterinarian Dr. Ana Marie Cabel, the animals are also assigned to trainers who will oversee their daily progress to establish their suitability for placement in different institutions run by the city government, including residential facilities. community care and rehabilitation.
In addition to this, the city also works with various animal groups to increase pet adoption and provide each animal with a new family.
Subscribe to our daily newsletter
Subscribe to INQUIRER PLUS to access The Philippine Daily Inquirer and over 70 titles, share up to 5 gadgets, listen to the news, download as early as 4am and share articles on social media. Call 896 6000.