Syndicate targets 'stronger' SA dogs

2012-11-01 12:00
A German Shepherd puppy (File)

A German Shepherd puppy (File) (Shutterstock)

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Cape Town - A dog smuggling syndicate is targeting South African dogs because their bloodlines are stronger and they are less prone to illnesses, it was reported on Thursday.

"The syndicate made it clear that they want dogs from South Africa because they more aggressive.

"Aggressive dogs are normally used for dog fights and others for breeding or safeguarding homes," National Animal Welfare Task Team leader Mariette Hopley told the Cape Times.

The task team said 97 dogs were rescued from the syndicate in August alone.

The dogs were either bought for between R100 and R300, or stolen in Cape Town, before being transported to Angola to be sold at a huge mark-up.

Hopley told the newspaper bets as high as R80 000 were made on dog fights.

She recommended that owners microchip their dogs or tattoo a number on their ear.

Thirteen dogs illegally being taken to Angola were rescued by police at the Cape Town International Airport on Monday, The Cape Times reported.

Dogs being kept at safehouse

Two men from Angola were arrested in a sting operation, and faced charges of theft. Their export documents were incomplete and their passports were false.

Captain Frederick van Wyk told the newspaper eight dogs were found in the cargo section at the airport and five dogs in the baggage hall. They were found in small crates and luggage bags.

Hopley said at the time that the confiscated dogs were being kept at a safehouse and would be handed over to an animal welfare organisation before attempts were made to find their owners.

She told The Cape Times newspaper that 80 dogs had been rescued from a dog smuggling syndicate since August.

The dogs were mainly Alsatians, Rottweilers, German Shepherds and Boerboels.

The puppies were apparently being sold for about R10 000 each and the adult dogs for R25 000 each in Namibia, Angola and Zimbabwe.
- SAPA
Read more on:    cape town  |  animal abuse
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