Animal welfare groups need more financial support

Dr Siew Tuck Wah, president of animal welfare group, Save Our Street Dogs (SOSD), with some of the rescued strays at the Pasir Ris shelter. Animal welfare groups need more financial support from businesses in order to deal with their high operat
Dr Siew Tuck Wah, president of animal welfare group, Save Our Street Dogs (SOSD), with some of the rescued strays at the Pasir Ris shelter. Animal welfare groups need more financial support from businesses in order to deal with their high operation costs, said Law Minister K.Shanmugam on Friday. -- PHOTO: NEW PAPER FILE

SINGAPORE - Animal welfare groups need more financial support from businesses in order to deal with their high operation costs, said Law Minister K.Shanmugam on Friday.

Speaking at an appreciation dinner organised by the animal welfare group Save Our Street Dogs (SOSD), he cited how the group spends about $30,000 every month on operating costs including utility bills and salaries for its staff. The amount was "enormous", he said, for an organisation founded just three years ago.

The number of dogs in SOSD's shelter has also nearly doubled this year to 78, from 40 last year.

Said Mr Shanmugam: "Money is hard (for them) to come by, and cash flow is a problem even with the government subsidies and tax breaks."

Mr Shanmugam urged businesses to lend their support to SOSD and other animal welfare groups in Singapore. He added: "If we improve the lot of the animals around us, we foster empathy and generosity, and we create a different society, we cultivate a spirit in society which cares not only for itself."

Said Dr Siew Tuck Wah, the president of SOSD, at the dinner: "Singapore's attitude towards animals has changed. As our society matures, more people are aware of the animals around them - more show compassion towards animals."