Driven by their love of animals, Mission Paws’ible has been, well, on a mission to change the fate of Bali’s many uncared-for cats and dogs. Taking a holistic approach to their work that engages communities as well as directly caring for these animals, the organisation is slowly building a long-term solution that ensures their welfare.
Founder Prue Barber was drawn to help the many dogs and cats she saw in terrible conditions around the island, offering her services to the already active and passionate animal projects in Bali. However, she felt that there was a more sustainable way to approach animal-focused initiatives in Bali, and thus founded Mission Paws’ible in 2015.
Whilst many projects are charity-based, Prue developed a business model to generate income, from which 100% of profits would be used to fund the many different programmes and services focused on animal welfare.
So, through their online shop of cool and wholesome pet products, on top of generous donations and fundraising activities, Mission Paws’ible has been able to successfully fund animal rescues, rehabilitation, fostering, rehoming, community sterilisation programs and more.
Whilst a lot of work deals directly with stranded, abandoned, sick animals, a large portion of their efforts go to ‘soft’ changes, especially in educating communities. This means campaigning for lower euthanasia rates, reducing pet dumping, ousting unethical breeders and helping to foster a deeper love and understanding of animals among local pet owners.
One of the key points of engagement with the community is through Mission Paws’ible’s mass sterilisation days. This program provides free sterilisation in certain areas, helping to ensure the number of stray dogs being born is reduced, as well as helping pet owners keep their own litter to a manageable size! During these events is a great time to engage with pet owners, learn from them and share information.
During one of Mission Paws’ible’s previous mass sterilisations, the organisation was thrilled by how many Balinese pet owners came, showing deep love and care for their dogs. They photographed and interviewed some participants, hoping to share and inspire others through their stories.
Here are some of the lovely exchanges they had:
How did Muku come into your life?
Her father is a Bali dog and her mother is a Pomeranian mix. Muku was given to me by relatives in Sanur because they had too many dogs and I had none. I wanted a ‘pengijeng’ (guardian) to watch over the house. We treat her as part of the family. We feed her, talk to her, play with her and take her on walks.
Why did you decide to sterilise your dog today?
I wanted to prevent her from getting pregnant. She is vulnerable if she isn’t sterilised. I am afraid of male dogs coming into the house when she is in heat. She is better cared for when she is sterilised.
(2) Mogi and Pillow
What’s the story behind Mogi and Pillow?
Since the 2nd grade of high school, I have wanted to have a dog of my own. My aunty has a lot of dogs so I asked her for one. I got the other dog from someone who wanted to throw him away and I wanted to keep him.
I had another dog before Pillow. His name was Anggrek (‘orchid’) but he was poisoned. I kept Pillow because I didn’t want him to be thrown away. My family has always loved having dogs. They protect the house and they are friendly. When I come home from work, it’s so nice to have the dogs to greet me besides my mom and dad.
Why did you decide to get your dogs sterilised and vaccinated today?
If they were bitten by another dog who had a virus, my dogs would be safe if they are vaccinated. Mogi and Pillow like to lick a lot. If we accidentally get licked on the mouth by them, we will also be safe. It is about the health of the dogs and my family.
What’s Miko’s story?
I used to have a very big dog and people were afraid of him. He was old and sadly died. The house felt so empty, so I asked a friend for a dog. Every family must have a dog. They guard the house, they are like security. It works very well and many Balinese people like dogs.
Why did you decide to sterilise your dog today?
I actually just wanted to vaccinate him but there was a lot of good information here on sterilisation so I decided to get him sterilised. It will make him more calm. I got him vaccinated because I would hate for him to catch rabies.
Mission Paws’ible’s current major project is to build The Healing Centre to rehabilitate rescued animals plus Unleashed Dog Park, a social enterprise that will reinvest its profits back into the community through programs such as free vaccination, sterilisation and education. To support their work, you can donate or purchase pet accessories from their online shop, missionpawsible.org