Istanbul's stray dogs may have homes, but the city has made sure not to leave man's best friend behind.Turkey's largest animal shelter, the Kısırkaya Hayvan Bakımevi, aims to meet the needs of stray dogs in the country's largest city, Istanbul.
Muhammet Nuri Coşkun, director of Istanbul Metropolitan Municipality Veterinary Services, told Anadolu Agency (AA) that the shelter uses 26 vehicles to bring stray dogs to animal shelters. The dogs are then neutered and vaccinated against rabies before they receive a yellow ear tag that allows them to return to the place they were found in Istanbul. Built on 380 acres, the animal shelter provides vaccination, sterilization and other services for animals. Eighty people work at the shelter, including 18 veterinarians, according to Coşkun.
The shelter includes a nursery, 10 treatment units and an administrative building. Each of these departments is 500 square meters. Coşkun assured Istanbul residents that they do not need to worry about contracting rabies from stray dogs wearing the yellow ear tag. He said there has only been one reported case of rabies in Istanbul in the past three years. "Last year, 25 stray animals received rabies vaccinations in the city," he said. However, Coşkun warned that "there could be a possibility that a stray animal [in Istanbul] has rabies if its behavior is abnormal."