Top Taiwan businessman advocates new approach to strays

Open letter supports Trap-Vaccinate-Neuter-Return policy

Photo by Hisashi. (By Wikimedia Commons)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) – In an open letter Saturday, Pegatron Corporation Chairman Tung Tzu-hsien (童子賢) expressed his support for zero-euthanasia and for a “trap-vaccinate-neuter-return” (TNVR) approach to stray animals.

Legal amendments introduced last February forbade the killing of animals held at shelters nationwide, yet the change has not allayed fears about the treatment of strays in detention, reports said.

If people in Taiwan do not stop abandoning their animals, then the number of strays will not diminish, so there is a need for the nationwide use of a TNVR policy, Tung said. Homeless animals should be caught, spayed and neutered before being released into their natural environment again.

The zero-euthanasia method could not just stop with the locking up of all strays, he said, adding that such an approach could not be successful since so much money would needed to be spent on infrastructure. In addition, what looked like a happy resolution to a problem could turn into a tragedy for the locked-up animals, he wrote.

Under a TNVR policy, only one out of five strays would have to be locked up, needing only 10 percent of the funds now being spent on animal shelters.

Tung referred to the positive experience with TNVR in Tainan City to predict that a nationwide introduction of such a campaign would bear results within five years. Not only that, but it was a precondition without which the zero-euthanasia strategy could not end in success, Tung wrote.

He strongly recommended TNVR as the way to stop a vicious circle in which the number of stray animals would continue to grow and their living standards continue to decline.