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Pakistani teen rescues animals, relocates them to homes in Canada

Updated 13 Dec, 2021
Registered as a charity group in Canada, Hassan’s Project Save Animals has four members, including a Canadian national. Since 2018, they have rescued more than 700 animals and relocated them to safe homes. twitter.com/@psa_pk
Registered as a charity group in Canada, Hassan’s Project Save Animals has four members, including a Canadian national. Since 2018, they have rescued more than 700 animals and relocated them to safe homes. twitter.com/@psa_pk

He was only 16 when he tried to rescue a malnourished cat in Lahore but though she died, his resolve to do his best for other animals has not wavered. Since then, the 19-year-old Syed Hassan and his organization Project Save Animals has rescued at least 700 animals since 2018 according to Arab News.

Project Save Animals, registered as a charity group in Canada, has four members, including a Canadian national. Since 2018, they have rescued more than 700 animals and relocated them to safe homes.

Animal cruelty was declared a punishable offence in Pakistan last year, but rescue workers have said fines "alone fail to deter abuse, which is widespread in the country where protection laws are long outdated and welfare groups lack the resources to treat and shelter abandoned and neglected pets."

Hassan's organization rescues abused animals, mainly cats and dogs, and places them in in foster care. They also run neutering and vaccination programmes for strays, as well as awareness campaigns.

Most of their rescue animals have been adopted in Canada, as there is “a very low ratio of adoption of the street or non-breed animals,” Hassan said.

“We have rescued more than 721 animals, and all were adopted and are living good lives in their new homes,” he was quoted in the paper as saying.

He supervises the adoption process. “We keep doing follow-ups with adopters to ensure these animals are properly looked after. We get weekly and then monthly updates about their well-being.”

The main challenge he says is funding the travel and they rely on crowdfunding. And when the project lacks funds, its members contribute themselves.

“We have to contribute a lot from our own pockets,” he said. “It costs a great deal to send an animal to Canada.”

The organisation charges an adoption fee of about $800, but transporting a dog to Canada costs more than $1,700.

Hassan said they hope to receive grants from the Canadian government in the near future to support their cause.

In Pakistan, he says there's a need for laws that protect animals.

“The government of Pakistan needs to take animal rights seriously and make laws that protect the weakest of our society.”