ASPIN RA

A white puppy lay dead in the middle of the street. I was nonchalant as I knew it was the neighbor’s, thus they should be responsible of the puppy. I heard a tricycle had ran over it. It was the usual morning for me, until I found out the truth of that lifeless puppy on the road.

Their owner hired someone to kill those puppies because they couldn’t handle them anymore.” One of the neighbors told me. The rest of the puppies had seek refuge in her house. She fed them whenever those puppies were left to fend for themselves. I saw one of the puppies bled on the nose, the other one had a wound on the forehead. Their heads where whacked with a hard wood.

We started to put a tarp at our gate about RA 8485 or the Animal Welfare Act where it states that animal abuse is punishable by law. And while we were advocating, we also began to take care of Yanna and Clark. I was hoping to find them a better home, but it was not easy  for Aspins or Askals at that time because nearly everyone would prefer pets with breed. Some people in the neighborhood, including the owner who failed to have the dogs killed months earlier were eager to have them impounded. They were considered a nuisance. For us, they were lives that were unwanted and unluckily born to furparents who are irresponsible.   

The neighbor who sheltered Yanna and Clark, we took them under our care, fed them, collared them, and would take turns in taking them to the vet when they needed it. We would have their anti-rabies vaccines updated, and so on. All expenses were paid by our own pockets.

Yanna died of mastitis, a breast infection that can kill a nursing dog. She died under our bed as it was too late for us to notice that she was in a bad shape already. Clark is still with us, healthy and still happy to see the former family he had who wanted them gone; such an amazing display of loyalty to his former master. We also took in their other Aspin, Siksik, who was always tied outside the house, rain or shine.

Currently, their former owners are happy with their pure breed dogs. After getting rid of their Aspins,they now have toy dogs that have cash equivalents; so to speak, monetary value. They couldn’t handle their Aspins, maybe because they didn’t want to since they are just Aspins (Aspin ra). Aspins are the most looked down of all breeds in the Philippines, and most impounded dogs are Aspins, unclaimed and killed after 3 days. Aspins and Puspins are also the once you find on the streets, homeless with skin diseases begging for scraps. Aspins are the Asong Pinoy and Puspins are the Pusang Pinoy which puppies and kittens are sometimes found in plastic bags or boxes somewhere grassy thrown away because they are nuisance.

Companion animals in the Philippines is a sad love story for Aspins and Puspins. However, with the growing number of genuine compassionate people for dogs and cats, there is hope that the fate of Aspins, Askals Puspins, Pusakals and strays will change. But for now, all these strays and abused animals still hope for better homes and better pawrents. The animal welfare advocates with the government’s active participation still have different roads and miles to take to change the situation of the companion animals especially the ones unwanted.