After many dairy farms in southern Israel were attacked by Hamas terrorists on October 7, they now face another issue coming from Gaza: stray dogs coming into the farms and killing the cows' calves. The article includes some disturbing images, viewer discretion is advised.
In recent weeks, dairy farmers in communities close to the Gaza Strip began recovering from the terror attack. In Kibbutz Nahal Oz, for example, around 300 dairy cows have returned to the farm, compared to about 400 before the outbreak of the war.
Since the start of February, the dairy farm has become nearly fully operational again. However, wild dogs coming from the Gaza Strip pose a problem that complicates matters for the residents.
The starved dogs, arriving from the Gaza Strip, infiltrate the communities near the Gaza border and mainly attack the dairy cow's calves. These incidents affect residents throughout the region. Dozens of calves have already been attacked in the pastures of Nahal Oz, as well as Alumim.
Gidi Sabag, who manages Kibbutz Nahal Oz's dairy farm, told Ynet: "After all of the efforts we made to restore the farms, this is the last thing we needed to happen. We discover more and more calves that have been attacked every morning. There are hundreds of packs of stray dogs roaming the area."
Sabag added that the dogs from Gaza entered Israel through breaches in the border fence. "There was a period when they were dealt with, caught, or eliminated," he said. "But now, almost nothing is being done to handle it. They attacked several calves last night, one of them being a newborn. This repeats itself daily.
"This is causing serious damage. It breaks our hearts to see what's happening to the calves. We took several actions, built fences, and the like, but it didn't help. They break through everything we try and do," he added.
Dairy farmers living close to the Gaza Borer said, "We must increase hunting. They are slaughtering the calves." The farmers are calling for the government to help them: "Someone must intervene and help us deal with this issue, or else it will end in disaster."
The dogs aren't afraid to approach humans. In a video shot by Kobi Sofer from the Nature and Parks Authority near Kibbutz Erez, where several dogs can be seen approaching a car and barking incessantly, while other dogs are seen at a distance.
The Agriculture Ministry said in a statement: "The Agriculture Ministry is monitoring the situation and is assisting the local authorities responsible for dealing with stray animals in general, particularly in the western Negev. The Agriculture Ministry allocated 2.1 million shekels to fund additional resources to capture, vaccinate, and chip the stray dogs."