Editorial: New home for Bonbon

Editorial Art by Enrico Santisas
Editorial Art by Enrico Santisas

A male stray dog, an Aspin or Asong Pinoy, has been named “Bonbon.” There is nothing really special with the name given to the four-legged furry creature because he is named after a barangay in Cebu City where he was found with a knife lodged in his head.

Bonbon is the village where the dog Bonbon received a taste of man’s heartlessness towards his kind.

Netizen Jezzrel Tabal shared Bonbon’s poor state (an inch of the six-inch-long knife was buried in the canine’s head) on social media, which was later heavily circulated on Sunday, Nov. 6, 2022.

The news eventually reached local animal rescuer Theresa Marie Vidal, who then launched a search for the dog with Tabal and Tabal’s father on Monday, Nov. 7. Personnel of Cebu City’s Department of Veterinary Medicine and Fisheries also visited Bonbon.

They failed to locate the dog.

Vidal and the Tabals resumed their search for Bonbon on Monday, Nov. 8. Still, they failed to find the poor dog, which made Vidal think that Bonbon had already died.

The following day, Vidal received a message telling her that someone had found Bonbon. After fetching the dog, she brought Bonbon to the veterinarian Dr. Ryan Yandug III, who successfully removed the knife from the dog’s head.

The Philippines has a law that protects the welfare of animals. It is Republic Act (RA) 8485 (the Animal Welfare Act of 1998), certain provisions of which were amended by RA 10631 in 2012.

RA 8485 states that it is “unlawful for any person to torture any animal, to neglect to provide adequate care, sustenance or shelter, or maltreat any animal or to subject any dog or horse to dogfights or horsefights, kill or cause or procure to be tortured or deprived of adequate care, sustenance or shelter, or maltreat or use the same in research or experiments not expressly authorized by the Committee on Animal Welfare.”

An animal owner must also be a responsible owner. The law states that the person will be charged with maltreatment if he abandons his pet “without reasonable cause or excuse.”

If one cannot provide adequate care, then one must not raise a pet. It is as simple as that.

The people who helped Bonbon are the Aspin’s angels who saved him from the brink of death.

The unidentified person who stabbed Bonbon is the representative of humanity’s dark side, of those who are incapable of showing kindness.

Domesticated animals cannot speak the man’s language but they have a nervous system, too—they can feel love and hate from humans; they can also feel joy and pain.

Bonbon was still in Yandug’s clinic on Thursday, Nov. 10. After he regains his full strength, he will no longer be a stray dog in Barangay Bonbon—he will have a new home


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