Beware the Bali dog meat trade

Beware the Bali dog meat trade.

Recently a friend and Bali expat came home to find his twelve month old and much loved puppy had gone missing.

Spotty the dog, Malcolm-Scott-Books

Spotty is allowed a lot of freedom because my friends villa is situated on a property surrounded by jungle. And although he is about the size of a shoe box he manages to keep a band of marauding monkeys away from the home.

Obviously my friend and his wife were distraught, especially because it wasn’t the first time one of their pets had disappeared.

My friend has lived in Bali for fifteen years and he told me that he has lost a few of his pets to the, “dog meat kidnappers” as he refers to them. His wife who is Indonesian explained that dogs belonging to expats are valued because they’re generally clean, fat and rabies free.

beware the Bali dog meat trade
beware the Bali dog meat trade

My friend and his wife also told me how they had once found one of there beloved pets tied up behind a Dog Meat Cafe twenty five kilometers from their home. They explained that they had randomly pulled over to buy a drink at a small shop when the dog chained out back of a neighboring warung became extremely excited.

The dog was dirty, undernourished and losing its fur but it only took the couple a moment to recognize their pet. Then despite the protests of the restaurant owner they kidnapped their dog back and they took it home. Sadly the animal was re-kidnapped a few months later, (they believe by the same people), and never seen again.

When my friends arrived home to find Spotty had gone missing they dispatched their security guard Nur to see if he could find the little dog.  

beware the Bali dog meat trade
Has anyone seen my dog Spotty.

Nur is not a big man but he is intense man, he wears combat boots, camouflage gear and he normally carries a large and serrated hunting knife at his belt. He also likes Spotty because he keeps him company on the long lonely nights he spends in the security hut.

Nur gathered his security torch and his hunting knife and he went searching for the little dog in the dark jungle. He had an idea where to look because he knew a group of construction workers from Flores  had set up camp not far from the villa.

Nur crept close to the camp and he called Spotty’s name then after a few minutes the badly shaken and disheveled little dog limped from the jungle. The security guard investigated further and he discovered that Spotty had been tied up in their camp while they planned their next meal.

Somehow Spotty managed to escape when he heard his name called.

Malcolm Scott Books
Spotty and his injured leg after he was saved by Nur, Malcolm Scott Books

Nur then took the dog home and he received a bonus and a beer while Spotty received a bone and a bath. But my friends also discovered that Spotty had lost the fur off one of his legs and that another leg was so badly hurt he was unable to put it on the ground.

Little Spotty was then taken to the vet and the doctor pronounced that his leg would eventually heal and his fur would grow back. And that the brave little dog would be out chasing monkeys again in no time.

A lot of people that travel to Bali do not realize that the consumption of dog meat is legal and that it is considered a  delicacy. Some Indonesian’s also believe that dog meat has medicinal properties that improve sexual stamina and strength. 

The Bali Animal and Welfare Association (B.A.W.A.) released a study in 2014 that is extremely eye opening. For the sake of awareness and the hope of donations for a worthy cause. I have kidnapped a few of their facts and figures. I have  also supplied a link to their website, but I do warn that some of the images are graphic and distressing.

•100,000 dogs are slaughtered in Bali every year for sale in RW restaurants.

• 100% of dogs are inhumanely killed.

• 70% are butchered alive: They are lassoed and partially strangled before their body parts are hacked off while they are alive.

. 25% are poisoned.

.1% are shot with air rifles.

.4% are inhumanely killed using other methods.

• A dog sells from Rp 15,000 to Rp 40,000.

• Each Bali warung uses between ½ and 7 dogs a day

• From a 15kg dog a warung can make around 40 portions of soup or satay, which sell for Rp15,000 – Rp20,000 per portion with rice

• 50% of people who eat dog meat are native Balinese; and 50% are from other areas of Indonesia including Medan, Flores, Sumatra and Manado.

• 80% of people who eat dog meat in the northern Bali regency of Buleleng are Balinese.

• 45% of dogs destined for dog meat are sold to traders; 5% are given by owners in exchange for rice, chilies, baskets and so on.

• 50% of RW dogs are stolen from the streets and from houses.

• 95% of RW dogs are transported by motorbikes; 5% are moved by bus and truck.

• 50% of RW warungs in Bali are supplied with dogs from other regencies. Moving dogs across Bali regency borders is illegal.

For more information B.A.W.A. website


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Update: Zika Virus alert Southeast Asia

US health officials have updated their Zika Virus alert for Southeast Asia

US health officials have updated their Zika Virus alert for Southeast Asia by advising pregnant women to avoid traveling to 11 countries because of concerns over outbreaks of the Zika virus in the region.

Brunei, Cambodia, East Timor, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, the Maldives, Myanmar, the Philippines, Thailand and Vietnam are on the list and part of the warning issued on 29 September.

The update to the alert status was issued by the Center for Disease Control and Prevention because of reports that a number of U.S. travelers to the region have been affected by the virus over the past year.

This following article was originally posted as: Zika Virus information for people thinking of traveling to Bali.

The Zika Virus is only known to be spread by the Aedes Aegypti mosquito which is found in South East Asia, Africa, North America, Northern Australia (Queensland and Cains) and which is most prevalent in South America.

US health officials have updated their Zika Virus alert for Southeast Asia

The Mosquito is medium sized, black and it has a silvery white lyre-shape on it’s scutum or shield. The mosquito can also be recognized by the banded white stripes on it’s legs.

Zika Virus

Anyone holidaying in Bali should take due care but it is currently advised by the Australian government that women who are pregnant refrain from travel to the holiday island.

Traveler’s to Bali should check that hotel rooms are not located close to stagnant water containers disused ponds or drains that could hold mosquito lava.

People staying in hotel rooms and villa’s in Bali should spray dark and moist area’s, under beds and behind drapes and cupboards with a mosquito spray that contains DEET. It is also recommended tourists use a western style repellent and avoid spending prolonged periods outside at night.

US health officials have updated their Zika Virus alert for Southeast Asia
Zika Virus can be transmitted by monkey bites

Although more commonly spread by mosquitoes travelers should also be advised that last year an Australian tourist was diagnosed with acute Zika Virus after he was bitten by a monkey at the Ubud Monkey Forest.

The Zika infection or virus has been linked to a rare birth defect called microcephaly in pregnant women.

US health officials have updated their Zika Virus alert for Southeast Asia
Zika Virus linked to microcephaly

When the child is born the newborn’s head is smaller than normal and it is believed the brain may not have developed properly. Several experiments have now shown that the virus can cross the placenta and attack fetal nerve cells including some that develop into the brain.

Medical workers and scientists investigating the virus have also noticed an increase in reports of a nerve condition called Guillain-Barre syndrome that can cause paralysis.

Most people infected with Zika Virus do not show any symptoms and only one in five are disabled by the sickness, but in some cases the infection can cause fever, rash, severe headache, joint pain, and muscle borne pain.

Illness from the Zika Virus is usually not severe and does not require hospitalization and so detection-warning and other preventive measures by health authorities remain  difficult.

Further evidence suggests that in rare circumstances the virus can be spread through sexual transmission. Recently cases have surfaced where the virus has been transmitted by males who have visited infected regions to females who have not, however cases of reverse transmission remain undocumented.

As yet there is no specific treatment for the Zika Virus but the majority of medical professionals recommend plenty of fluids and rest.  It is also important to note that in most developing countries the specific test for Zika Virus are not easily available.

The Australian Government website Smart Traveler has recently updated information on the virus.

© Bali-Islands. Articles may be quoted and reproduced if attributed

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