88-Year-Old Man in Tripoli Is Sheltering Dogs Abandoned During The Pandemic

Alison Meuse

Meet 3amo Mahmoud and his dogs who live in a blue shipping container on the outskirts of Tripoli, Lebanon.

Mahmoud Youssef, an 88-year-old man, is dedicating his time to shelter dogs who have been abandoned by their owners due to the COVID-19 pandemic in Lebanon.

Due to the circulating fake news reporting that pets can spread COVID-19, some pet owners have been abandoning their pets out of fear.

This has added to the already high number of stray dogs and cats in Lebanon and, due to the same ignorance, some have been poisoning these stray animals.

3amo Mahmoud, as he is known in northern Lebanon, is protecting these innocent souls from all kinds of danger. He doesn’t only rescue these dogs, but he is also putting them up for adoption so they can have permanent homes.

However, one can’t achieve great things on his own. 3amo Mahmoud has been getting help from local volunteers to feed and take care of the dogs.

Mahmoud Youssef explained to The National, where his story was first shared, that his initiative is driven by a sense of humanity, saying that “If those who are abandoning dogs had a speck of humanity they wouldn’t let these little creatures out in the street to die.”

One of his volunteers described the phenomenon to The National, saying that some people’s ignorance leads them to believe that their pet is a risk during the coronavirus crisis, that’s why they dump them.

But the opposite is true. Experts have said that it is humans who are transmitting the disease to their pets.

There is also the factor of the tough living conditions in Lebanon, leading some people to abandon their dogs, as they deem their pet an extra mouth to feed.

However, this shouldn’t be a justification. Pets are humans’ friends, and we don’t abandon our friends that rely on us during harsh times, especially the vulnerable ones.

Besides, 3amo Mahmoud has practically nothing. He lives in a trailer, is fighting to keep his land, and has taken in some 100 dogs so far.

These abandoned dogs in Tripoli, however, don’t need to worry. Heroes like 3amo Mahmoud and his volunteers are stepping up to save them and protect them.

Asia Times Middle East editor and correspondent Alison Meuse took to Twitter to announce that she paid a visit to 3amo Mahmoud who now shelters more than 100 dogs.

She wrote: “Paid a visit to Amo (uncle) Mahmoud, who lives in a trailer on the outskirts of Tripoli, fighting against the powerful to keep his land, and who won’t say no to taking another dog.”

What a beautiful soul, indeed. Check out the video by The National:

We have a dedicated coronavirus section where you can find the latest news/updates about the pandemic in Lebanon, inform yourself with WHO-verified resources, and track the number of cases in Lebanon in real-time. Click here.

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