Barely a month after the elephant poisoning in Sabah, a 14-year-old female Malayan sun bear and Arabian stallion at Malacca Zoo and Night Safari fell victim to poisoning by an elderly businessman from Johor. CCTV footage from the Feb 17 incident showed the man in the zoo feeding the animals fruit that had been laced with toxin.
In late September, a gruesome video showing dogcatchers dragging and eventually strangling a stray dog was uploaded by Malaysian Independent Animal Rescue (MIAR) activist Puspa Rani to her YouTube account. Even though there had been other videos showing similar acts of council-related abuse of strays all over the country, this one touched a nerve and went viral, clocking up to more than 100,000 hits to date.
Two Malaysian youths from Johor Baru caused a Facebook uproar in September when they posted photos of themselves posing with a kitten they had put inside a sealed jar. The photos caused such serious consternation among cat lovers that Mark Soh, founder of the Malaysian Crime Awareness Campaign Facebook page, lodged a report to the Society For The Prevention Of Cruelty To Animals (SPCA) against the offending duo.
The ethical treatment of animals can sometimes be a touchy issue, especially across national and cultural boundaries. In May, animal rights group Animals Australia highlighted the issue of how Malaysians mistreat live Australian wild goats that had been exported to our country with a hidden camera footage.
In November, Al Jazeera reported that Anson Wong AKA the “Lizard King” is back in business. Notorious for being one of the world’s worst wildlife traffickers, Wong was last arrested in 2010 at KL International Airport when he attempted to smuggle 95 boa constrictors to Indonesia.