Opens new pet care center
By Peter Townson (edited from the Gulf Times)
Animal welfare has often been criticized in Qatar, but one young Qatari is passionate about improving the situation for many animals in his country.
Abdulla al-Naemi has dedicated the past three years to rescuing and rehabilitating animals who were dumped on the street or in other desperate situations.
He runs the Second Chance Rescue from a working farm where he currently houses 45 dogs, and last week he opened the Parkview Petcare Centre.
“At first it surprised my family and friends,” he said of his rescuing exploits. “They asked me why I would want to take an animal from the street and rescue it. But it breaks my heart to see animals outside without food and water, and I want to help them.”
Al-Naemi admits that he was once a “bad dog-guardian” who needed to be educated about the ins and outs of having a pet.
When his dog went missing, he came across the Qatar Animal Welfare Society (QAWS) and he found that he wanted to do more to help animals in need.
He shares QAWS’ concerns about animal welfare and rights in his country, and pointed to the condition of animals on sale at Souq Waqif as a clear indication of an area which needs to be improved.
Al-Naemi has visited various government officials to discuss the situation, and has worked on a set of rules and regulations to improve the situation and ensure that international standards and best practices are followed.
“The conditions there have been annoying me, and plenty of people feel the same way,” he said, “To see puppies that should be playing but can’t event stand up – it makes me feel sick and I want to change it.”
This active advocate for education on animal rights is passionate about teaching people about the importance of animal welfare, and the joy that having a companion animal can bring.
Al-Naemi often refers to Islamic teachings that show that Muslims have a responsibility to look after animals, as he recognizes that religious reasons are often cited against keeping pets.
He has already had an impact on many of his friends, who originally knew very little about animals, but have now adopted pets and fully support al-Naemi’s work.
“I have a cause in life and will save as many animals as I can save,” he said, adding “my friends might have been shocked at first, but now they are all praising me for my work.”
What you can do: Support the Qatar Animal Welfare Society – Qatar’s first animal shelter and humane society.