Malaysian woman praised for saving injured dog

Rescuers using a towel to secure the dog after it was brought up out of the drain.
Rescuers using a towel to secure the dog after it was brought up out of the drain.PHOTO: THE STAR/ASIA NEWS NETWORK

ALOR GAJAH (THE STAR/ASIA NEWS NETWORK) - A Malay woman has been praised for saving an injured dog that was hit by a car.

The 44-year-old businesswoman, who wished to be only known as Ziezie, said she witnessed a car hitting the mongrel at 1am Saturday while she was out looking for a late night meal.

"When the car hit the dog, it was standing on the roadside and not in the middle of the road," she said, adding that she had seen the dog three or four days earlier scavenging food for its puppy.

"After it was hit, the dog dragged itself under a car and was yelping in pain. Even hearing it made me want to cry. It sounded so sad, as if it was asking for help. I couldn't sleep that night thinking of how I could help it," she said.

The next morning, Ziezie went to the location where the dog was hit and saw it lying on the ground unmoving, with a puppy beside it.

"The puppy was crying for its mum. I was crying too. I told the dog, 'please wait, please wait'," she said.

Later in the evening, Ziezie brought along three friends, Hidayah, Syafiq and Syikin, an experienced animal rescuer to see what they could do for the dog.

"We found it in the drain. Maybe it had dragged itself there to avoid the sun, and fell into the drain where it got stuck," she said.

"We brought along gloves and an e-collar so the dog wouldn't bite but the collar was too small. When we wore gloves, the dog became more afraid and aggressive. This was because it was in fear and pain," she said.

"So we took off the gloves and gently petted the dog to calm it down," said Ziezie.

The four friends had to crawl in the drain for about half-an-hour before they managed to get the dog out.

Sadly, the lone puppy is still missing. "We did not find it yesterday. We will look for it again today. If we find it, we will reunite it with its mother," said Ziezie.

"We feel sorry for the mother. But the puppy looked like it was old enough to look for food by itself."

The injured dog has been sent to Maju Animal Clinic in Malacca for treatment.

"Alhamdulillah, the dog is no longer in fear and is in stable condition. It will undergo surgery on Tuesday. Muka dia baik sangat (it has such a pleasant face)," she said.

Ziezie said that while she has received support for her action, there were also those who condemned her for touching the dog, which they claim is unclean.

Although many Muslims scholars discourage or even disallow the touching of dogs, particularly wet dogs, doing so in order to save a life is permissible as long as the proper purification process is carried out afterwards.

The cleansing process, called sertu or samak, involves washing the affected area six times with clean water and once with earth.

"What is important is that we saved the dog. And we can cleanse ourselves afterwards. We can also throw away the clothes if needed; it is not a problem for us. What is important is the dog's life," she said, adding that the incident occurred spontaneously.

Ziezie said that although she often feeds stray cats, this is her first time rescuing a dog.