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AMRRIC coordinates food donations to help dogs during hard times at Ali Curung

AMRRIC facilitated dog food donations being distributed at Ali Curung. Image; Barkly Regional Council

In November 2018, AMRRIC was requested to assist Barkly Regional Council in the aftermath of community unrest and subsequent fleeing of over half of the community, leaving approximately 37 free-roaming dogs abandoned in Ali Curung, NT.  With no food on offer, the dogs were starving, forming packs and posed a risk to the safety of remaining residents and workers.  

Ali Curung is a remote community approximately 170kms South of Tennant Creek.  ‘Ali Curung’ is a Kaidtich (Kaytetye) word meaning country of the dogs, dog area or dog dreaming. Dogs play a pivotal role in the culture and dreaming stories of the local community and are valued as companions and protectors.  The events that lead to the dogs’ abandonment in November were unprecedented, unplanned and sparked by fear and trauma.   Most residents who fled the community would have had no vehicle to fit their dogs in, and would have been going to other communities with already severe overcrowding and existing dog populations.  Taking their dogs with them was not an option for most. Under usual circumstance when families go to town, their dogs will remain in community and be looked after by friends or family.  With so many families absent though, the remaining dogs needed external support.

Since AMRRIC received the request to assist, it has rallied and coordinated a generous response from a variety of individuals, businesses and organisations, to source and transport the dog food thousands of kilometers to Barkly Regional Council’s Tennant Creek depot.  From there the food has been regularly distributed within Ali Curung by Animal Management Workers from Barkly Regional Council.

AMRRIC is grateful to a wide range of groups with which it has collaborated to address the welfare needs of the dogs, despite challenging logistics, including Barkly Regional CouncilTop End Rehoming Group IncRoyal CaninMclaren Concepts & Fencing, Piening Indigenous Services.

AMRRIC will continue to work with Barkly Regional Council and local stakeholders to ensure the animals' health and welfare needs are met. AMRRIC commends Barkly Regional Council and Barkly Vet Practice for their ongoing work to deliver vital desexing and parasite treatment programs within the region's communities.  

The good news is that many Ali Curung community members are now slowly returning to their homes. AMRRIC has no doubt that the reunion with their dogs will help to ease the trauma of the recent events.

You can learn more about this complex situation on Barkly Regional Council’s website:


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