Growing up in Wyoming and South Dakota you get to know quite a bit about farm animals and how they are raised. Being in Nepal reminds us of being at home because we get to see animals every day.
Farm animals in Nepal are raised a little differently than in the United States. Kathmandu has over one million people, but there are still farm animals walking through the streets. The most common animals to see are cows, goats and chickens. It’s always fun to wake up and see goats grazing in the empty lot behind our apartment. The farmers in Nepal own fewer animals and walk around with their animals while they graze. It is common to see someone with three to five cows or water buffalo walking down the street. A herd of 10 to 20 goats is common to see as well. The farmers will usually walk around with their animals and look for open lots with grass and plants. The house we live in has several open lots around it so it is a popular place for people to bring their animals.
Along with farm animals, Kathmandu is also full of dogs. There are no requirements to keep a dog in a yard or on a leash, so the dogs will wander around the streets looking for food or just exploring. Some dogs do have an owner and they will go back to their house in the evening or morning. The dogs seem to have their own territories, because the same dogs will be in the same area every day. Our neighborhood has two dogs that live there and they are both very friendly but very protective of their street.
There are dogs that are strays and have to fend for themselves for everything. There are several organizations in Kathmandu trying to help these dogs, including Animal Nepal and Kathmandu Animal Treatment Center. A large part of the work being done to help the stray dogs is population control through spay and neutering.
Cats are not as prevalent in the city, partly due to so many dogs running around, but there are organizations trying to help the cat population as well, including Catmandu lovers.
Being an animal lover myself, I love seeing all of the different animals. I even try to pet the baby goats every now and then. The variety of animals seen in a day makes each one an adventure.