In the past few years, we have witnessed a huge increase in the stray dog population across Bahrain. This has led to several instances wherein strays are subjected to different kinds of abuse and cruelty. Just recently, we had the chance to speak to Fathiya Al Bastaki, the founder of Bahrain Strays.
Can you tell us more about Bahrain Strays – what do you aim to achieve through this group?
I started this cause back in 2012, when I found some stray dogs roaming around Segaya. Even though there were people around, no one bothered to help the dogs (some of them were whining in pain). Before this, I didn’t have any idea about stray dogs in Bahrain, let alone the horrible things happening to them. From that moment, I decided to spread awareness and help the stray dogs in the country.
In 2013, I created a Facebook Page then later on an Instagram account, and a website. Soon enough, it has been followed by the compassion, generosity, hard work and drive of many other wonderful supporters and volunteers.
Our purpose is to spread awareness about stray dogs, change the misconception about them and inspire more volunteers to step forward in helping take care of them.
We’ve been receiving news about the inhumane treatment stray dogs in Bahrain are facing. How is Bahrain Strays helping improve the situation or preventing it from happening again?
Over the years, we’ve witnessed a lot of inhumane things happening to our strays. Based on our research, these strays have been the reason of complaints, causing them to be dumped to Askar. Just recently, some people went to kill around 30 innocent dogs in the same area which just proves the cruelty these strays face.
We’ve continuously been trying to destroy the misconception about stray dogs through our page. We post photos and videos online to show how lovely and harmless these dogs can be so that we can inspire other people to share some acts of kindness towards them.
How can residents help the Askar dogs?
In order to do this, we need a group of volunteers to take care of our Askar dogs through:
- Collecting food and visiting the location to feed the dogs.
- Communicating different hotels, restaurants and establishments to collect food from them. Because of the lack of donations, we cannot fulfill the needs of a thousands of stray dogs which have been dumped there since 2018.
- Pick up the wounded and sick dogs to the clinic and put them under the Bahrain Strays account.
- Do CNR (Catch, Neuter, Release). That’s the most important thing to do so we can control overpopulation.
In addition, residents may help by calling the municipality where they see the stray dogs. By doing this, the cleaners would visit the area and try to catch the dogs for CNR and relocated to Askar where we can take care if them. In case the cleaners don’t show up, they can call us and we will try to catch them.
Barain Strays (Dog Rescue) is an initiative started by Fathiya Al Bastaki, a passionate Bahraini animal lover. Their mission is to engage the hearts, hands and minds of the Bahraini community to help the stray dogs due to the immense discrimination they receive.
For more information:
+973 3967 5919