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Animal activists protest dog electrocutions in Mexico

January 13, 2009 |  8:53 am


You might remember we touched on the issue of dog abuse in Mexico late last year when we covered a documentary about how the authorities deal with the country’s street dogs.

Recent events confirm what Dallas-based director Bill Buchanan was trying to convey in his film "Companions to None" -- how cultural attitudes toward dogs in Mexico contribute to the continuation of electrocution as a means of getting rid of unwanted animals.

Animal-rights activists in the state of Mexico -- which borders Mexico City -- are up in arms following the electrocution of more than 200 dogs found near a dump last week.

The News reports that although several shelters offered to adopt or administer lethal injections to the animals, which were picked up when the dump was shut down, city veterinarians went ahead and put them down through electrocution after insisting that the animals were too dangerous to adopt.

Although this method of killing dogs is legal throughout most of Mexico, Buchanan’s film showed that many dogs suffer terribly in the process. A lack of sterilization programs for dogs throughout the country means that many of Mexico’s streets are teaming with homeless animals, even outnumbering human beings in some towns.

The News quotes Gustavo Larios Velasco, the president of the Mexican Assn. for Animal Rights, who said: "They are treated in such a savage form that it creates insensitivity in our society."

The city of Querétero and some boroughs in Mexico City are the only places in the country where electrocution is forbidden as a means of killing unwanted or dangerous animals.

Learn more about this issue at , the website for Buchanan’s documentary.

-- Deborah Bonello in Mexico City

Photo: A still image taken from the documentary "Companions to None." Credit: