Goats in garbage pass ills
Mohammed Rajab has about 50 goats. He entrusted them to Moneer, his son, in order to keep them safe and take them every day to graze on a hill to the north of Sana’a.
Last week, Moneer was upset. He said his father scolded him because Al-Hanoof, the finest goat of the lot, suddenly died.
Moneer and his neighbor Hamood Al-Ahdal, an elderly man with a respected knowledge about goats, tried to save the goat’s life by taking it to a veterinary center.
However, since there is no center in their village, which rests in the Shamlan district in the outskirts of Sana’a, they had to take it to a veterinarian in large market for goats and cows in Bab Al-Yemen.
On the way, an argument arose between Moneer and Al-Ahdal about the causes of the death. Monner insisted the goat died of a snakebite it received on the hill, while Al-Ahdal said the goat suffocated on a plastic bag it swallowed whilst grazing.
When the veterinarian checked the goat, it was discovered that Al-Hanoof had indeed died from swallowing an indigestible bag.
Moneer said the goat ate nothing for four days because the plastic bag stopped its stomach completely.
Al-Ahdal said hundreds of goats graze on grass in this region, which is better than coastal pastures. Moreover, the goats’ meat and milk are better quality. However, lots of garbage and plastic bags inundate upland pastures.
Adel Al-Daw’ani, manager of Wadi Hadramout Restaurant in Sana’a, said there are notable differences between goats that graze in uplands and those from coastal areas. He said the smell of goat meat from animals that graze on uplands is better.
Al-Daw’ani said goats that graze in cities eat garbage and stink when their meat is cooked.
Yusof Shamsan, a veterinarian, said diseases can spread to humans in this way. When the goat eats garbage, its meat becomes polluted; this is transferred to humans when the meat is eaten.
Shamsan said garbage poses a problem for humans; however, some garbage is beneficial for animals such as that from butchers and fish markets, which contains nutritious leftovers.
Shamsan said it is essential to differentiate between the detrimental garbage and the environmentally friendly leftovers that pose no danger to humans or animals.
"As long as humans live on earth, trash is accumulating,” Shamsan said. “This rubbish is troublesome for man but a good source of food for animals.”
Studies conducted by the veterinary center affiliated with the Ministry of Agriculture and Irrigation indicated that meat and milk from animals eating garbage carry hazardous viruses and diseases that could cause tumors if the meat is not fully digested.
The study concluded that the tumors trigger tiny insects, which ferment in the stomach resulting in the destruction of the stomach and the bowels. These tumors are transferable and could transmit more than 200 fatal diseases.
The veterinary center urged those who rear goats and cows meant to be slaughtered during Eid to provide suitable nutrition for the animals for 40 days before eating their meat. This will guarantee a safe, disease-free meal.
Milk should be boiled for 15 minutes. Attention must be paid to grass eaten by goats, particularly in urban areas. There must be caution when buying goats, as this is a ceremonial time, so there is an increased demand.
The National Strategy (2012-2016) for the agricultural sector notes that the current situation prevailing rural areas, with respect to marketing and slaughtering the animals, ought to be reconsidered.
Sadeq Al-Nabhani, an engineer participating in the strategy, said there is a worry about the health risks caused by inadequate butcheries and the absence of appropriate health inspections.
Butcheries should be under inspection before and after slaughtering, according to Al-Nabhani.