One hundred and twenty-seven human lives were lost, but a dog miraculously survived a massive bombing in Baghdad Tuesday – even though the building she was chained to collapsed.
The dog was first spotted chained to a roof railing after the Tuesday bombing, standing on a wall ledge over the collapsed home.
The owner of the dog, Farouq Omar Muhei, returned to his destroyed home and was reunited with the ginger-colored mutt today, the Associated Press reported.
“Lots of neighbors thought I was dead,” he said after his dog, Liza, was carried down to the street.
Officials initially said Muhei and his family were among the victims. But, to the surprise of neighbors, already marveling over the dog’s survival, he returned with his 14-year-old son, Omar, after being treated for cuts and other injuries. They were the only family members home at the time of the attack.
Only a few portions of the home remained standing — including one section of the roof where Liza was chained. The dog’s water bucket was by her side, but was empty when Muhei’s brother, Fuad, climbed over the rubble to unchain the dog. The dog, waiting calmly, yawned as Fuad approached.
Once carried down to the street and reunited with Muhei, 46, the dog — who he purchased as a puppy six years ago in Baghdad’s main pet market –shook with joy and lapped water from a puddle, according to the AP report.
“After we crawled out of the rubble of our home, I said to my son, ‘the dog is dead’,” said Muhei, who sells candy and small items in the local market. “But my son said, ‘No, I saw her.’ I came back today to rescue my dog.”
Posted by jwoestendiek December 9th, 2009 under Muttsblog.
Tags: baghdad, bombing, chained, collapsed, dog, family, farouq omar muhei, home, iraq, killed 127, ledge, leveled, liza, miracle, reclaimed, rescued, reunion, reunited, roof, rubble, saved, survived, survives, victims, wall, war
“While human beings in Iraq were killing each other in huge numbers, they ignored the dogs, which in turn multiplied at an alarming rate,” the New York Times reported last week.
Now stray dogs are such a menace that municipal workers are hunting them down and slaughtering them — about 10,000 in Baghdad just since December.
“With fewer bombs going off and hardly any bodies being dumped anymore, the dogs are perhaps the biggest problem on the filthy and rubble-strewn streets of Baghdad. Packs of strays scare schoolchildren and people who get up at dawn to go to work. They gather at open-air butcher shops where customers choose their meat from flocks of live sheep.
“Some people believe that the dogs spread disease, not a difficult case to make in a society that generally shuns dogs as pets, believing them to be contrary to Islamic edicts on personal cleanliness.
“Thus a relative peace has changed priorities, and not just in Baghdad. The holy Shiite city of Karbala was so overwhelmed with stray dogs last year that officials there offered 6,000 dinars ($5.30) for each animal caught and handed over to the municipality. The dogs were shot and buried en masse.”
In Baghdad, dogs are killed with rotten raw meat laced with strychnine. On the outskirts of town, articularly around the city’s sprawling garbage dumps, the dogs are shot. By the time the cmapgin ends this month, perhaps 20,000 dogs will have been exterminated, said Shaker Fraiyeh of the ministry’s veterinary services company.
“Our work may be against animal rights, but there is a more important issue, public health,” said Dr. Fraiyeh, a veterinarian in his 30s.
Abdul-Karim Ismail, a veterinarian with the state-owned company dealing with the dogs, said building and maintaining animal shelters and introducing spay/neuter programs to control Baghdad’s dog population are considered too costly and complicated in a nation where people had so many more pressing needs.
Some stray dogs have been fortunate enough to find new homes outside Iraq. S.P.C.A. International, a Washington-based charity, began “Operation Baghdad Pups” in 2007 to help American soldiers adopt and take home stray dogs they befriended while serving in Iraq.
Posted by jwoestendiek March 16th, 2009 under Muttsblog, videos.
Tags: animals, baghdad, baghdad pups, control, disease, dog, dogs, extermination, iraq, islam, over-population, poison, population, public health, pups, shoot, shot, sickness, slaughter, soldiers, stray, strychnine, war
A Navy soldier has been reunited with the dog she rescued in Iraq.
Construction Mechanic First Class Joan Steates, who along with fellow Seabees took in a stray shepherd-mix pup named Sako, was forced to leave her behind when she came home in October.
On Monday night, they reunited at Dulles Airport, throught the efforts of SPCA International’s Operation Baghdad Pups, which provides veterinary care, clearance and transportation for animals that U.S. service members can’t bear to leave behind in the Middle East.
In the past year year, Baghdad Pups has brought 79 dogs and cats from Iraq and Afghanistan. 50 other reunions are in the works.
The SPCA says the program, funded entirely by donations, spends about $4,000 to ship each animal to the U.S.
Posted by jwoestendiek February 6th, 2009 under Muttsblog, videos.
Tags: baghdad, dog, dogs, iraq, joan steates, navy, operation baghdad pups, reunion, reunite, sako, spca international
Say what you will about our soon to depart from office president, the man has got pretty good reaction time, and was far cooler under pressure than I would have expected — considering the shoes hurled at his head today in Baghdad by an Iraqi journalist appear to miss their mark by only inches.
He was calm, if not overly articulate in the immediate aftermath, and even came up with a witty remark a little later. “I’m OK,” he said. “All I can report is it is a size 10.”
“This is your farewell kiss, you dog!” the shoe hurler shouted in Arabic as he threw his shoes, according to the Associated Press.
Posted by jwoestendiek December 14th, 2008 under Muttsblog.
Tags: "you dog", baghdad, bush, bush and shoe, bush shoe video, bush shoes video, farewell, flying shoe, hurled, hurls, iraq, iraqi, journalist, kiss, near miss, news, ohmidog!, president, president bush, press conference, shoe, shoes, shoes fly, throw, throws, video
Baghdad authorities killed more than 200 stray dogs on Sunday, the opening day of a campaign to cull dog packs roaming the capital city.
The campaign was prompted by a spate of fatal attacks on residents.
Three teams of veterinarians and police officers used poisoned meat and rifles to kill the animals, according to the Associated Press.
Dr. Hassan Chaloub, an official at the veterinary hospital supervising the effort confirmed that the campaign started Sunday in wester Baghdad and will move to the eastern half of the city early next year. He said the capital has no dog shelters.
Thirteen people died in August in the capital after being attacked by dogs, according to Baghdad’s provincial council, which is overseeing the campaign.
Under Saddam Hussein, authorities killed stray dogs in the capital almost every year, but the practice ended with his ouster in 2003. Since then, local officials estimate, the number of strays in Baghdad has grown to more than a thousand.