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New Centers to Shelter Dogs
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More homes for the increasing number of stray and illegal dogs in Beijing and neighboring Hebei Province are being opened, according to the Beijing Public Security Bureau.

Illegal dogs are either not registered or contravene Beijing's "one dog per family policy." Official statistics show there are 550,000 registered dogs in the city but the Beijing Association of Small Animal Protection estimates there are a further 450,000 unregistered. 

One of the facilities is the Beijing Canine Shelter and Inspection Center located in Qiliqu Town, Changping District in the north of the city. A police truck arrived at the center yesterday afternoon and another four dogs were delivered to their new home and given a health check.

With four buildings for large dogs, eight rows of kennels for small breeds, quarantine, isolation and adoption zones, the center can hold more than 1,000 animals, said Huang Zhimin, head of the canine administration department of the bureau. To date the facility has received more than 500 dogs.

The center also has a 'hospital' and a 'dog cafeteria' with professional pet attendants and training experts ensuring the dogs are well looked after. "Nutritious food is specially prepared every day and they are given healthy portions," said Huang.

As well as ensuring the dogs are treated well and are healthy the center also serves as a base for them finding new homes. Qualified citizens can call the center's hotline, 6973860, to adopt a dog. This happens on Tuesdays and Fridays.

In Zhuozhou, Hebei Province, the local government yesterday allocated 1 million yuan (US$125,000) to set up four major dog "foster stations," Xinhua News Agency reported. A local official said they'd shelter illegal dogs sent to the area from Beijing.

The official added that local vets would provide professional care for the animals and a local army-dog training base contribute to management of the stations.

(China Daily November 16, 2006)

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