A stray dog is seen at Territorio de Zaguates or 'Land of the Strays' dog sanctuary in Carrizal de Alajuela, Costa Rica, April 20, 2016. In a lush, sprawling corner of Costa Rica, hundreds of dogs roam freely on a hillside - among the luckiest strays on e
Reuters

The well being and security of stray animals in Baghdad, the capital of Iraq is not a matter of importance to the residents, but animal lovers have taken to social media to fight for their cause.

These homeless animals have been mistreated and often brutally killed. Pet lovers are looking to change the outlook on these homeless animals and find them love.

An Agricultural college student, Assan Attallah 22 is one of the pioneers in this movement, her recent success managed to help get six dogs adopted after they were found in the destitute neighbourhood of Sadr City.

She is still on the outlook for homes for five more of these dogs.

Attallah and a friend had launched the "Animal Adoption" Facebook page only three months ago after they were distressed over the condition of the strays at Baghdad.

"I started this project because I saw animals were being mistreated and people would go as far as poisoning and killing them," Attallah told AFP.

She further added that people pay a lot of money to buy pets, but the money could be put to better use by taking care of these animals, cleaning them up and adopting them into loving homes.

25 animals have found their homes after the success of their Facebook page, but the biggest challenge which exists is convincing the locals to take an active role in caring for the stray animals.

10 years ago authorities comprising of veterinarians and police officers used poisoned meat, and rifles to gun down thousands of strays after they insisted that the strays were overrunning Baghdad.

The 2003 US invasion, and the battle against the Islamic State group Jihadists in 2014, caused the death of and displacement of millions, the thought of even trying to help strays is not welcomed and often frowned down upon.

"We've also been getting negative feedback," Attallah explained.

"People say: 'Why are you helping animals? They don't have feelings, they don't understand. It's not that important. You should focus on helping people'."

Ahmad al-Qaissy, 29, and his colleague Yaarub al-Shimmary, 30, heads of the Iraqi Association for Animal Welfare have had their hands tied, treating strays which have been in terrible conditions.

"Most of those that we receive have been abused either by adults or by children," Qaissy said.

Since the strays have seen abusive pasts, they require care first before they are taken to homes and adopted by new families.

A stray dog walks into an empty lot in San Jose, Costa Rica, April 22, 2016. In a lush, sprawling corner of Costa Rica, hundreds of dogs roam freely on a hillside - among the luckiest strays on earth. Fed, groomed and cared for by vets, more than 750 dogs
Reuters

"Only when the animal is in good health and is not scared anymore are they ready for adoption," Qaissy said.

The duo also uses Facebook and has about 35,000 members on the page, which they use to interact with candidates who are interested in adopting the animals.

A few questions are asked to assess the people interested in these animals, to make sure they are sent to good homes.