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Dogs with missing appendages are not an uncommon sight in the mountains of Taiwan…

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… but they’re still faster than you’ll ever be.

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This is what happens when you combine illegal gin traps* with population density and a profusion of abandoned pets and unaltered, free-roaming dogs. The lucky ones get saved by compassionate citizens who vet them and make the effort to find them a suitable home, if temperament allows. In the worst cases, the animal dies in excruciating pain (especially cats and smaller animals, whose whole bodies get caught).

Yet, some dogs manage to pull their mangled limbs out from the leg holds, heal up, and survive to run another day.

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Inspiration? Tragedy? An abomination? A curse?

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I wish I didn’t have to see them, yet when confronted, I can’t stop looking…

* Gin traps/leghold traps/捕獸夾 were officially declared illegal to manufacture, sell, set out, or import sometime in the last couple years with an amendment to Taiwan’s animal protection laws. However, there was relatively little publicity amongst the general population not already involved in the issue, as far as I can tell. To this day, there is virtually no enforcement of the law, as if the threatened fine of 15,000NT to 75,000NT (about $500 ~ $2500 USD) alone was supposed to deter offenders from doing what they’ve always done…