Guahan Paws for Pets

Guahan Paws for Pets held a wave to bring awareness to animal abuse Wednesday at the ITC intersection in Tamuning.

HAGÅTÑA (The Guam Daily Post) — Members of Guahan Paws for Pets took to the ITC intersection Wednesday afternoon to protest recent statements from mayors about using depredation permits to cull aggressive stray dogs.

Bearing signs with statements like "homeless not worthless" and "like humans, animals feel pain too," the small group of demonstrators stood beneath the afternoon sun waving at passing motorists.

Tina Guzman, founder of the Facebook group, said culling is not the answer to addressing issues with the stray dog population, and efforts should be focused on spaying and neutering.

"When it comes to animals, it's always the last thing on the list. But there is definitely funding out there to take care of the stray population. Our solution is to spay and neuter and start penalizing pet owners for letting their pets run free and not spaying and neutering... Mayors should go out there and start issuing citations," Guzman said.

Maelani Terlaje, the owner of an organic dog treat making business, said they don't agree with the use of depredation permits to cull strays and were out Wednesday in hopes of inspiring people to foster and adopt, and spay and neuter their pets to decrease the stay population, "rather than using guns."

Guam Animals in Need has also responded to the mayors' statements with calls to spay and neuter strays, citing research that indicates culling older strays only creates room for younger animals to take up the territory and its resources.

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