RAMPAGING gangs of wild monkeys are reportedly “kidnapping” cats and dogs and “holding them hostage” for food in Malaysia.
A bizarre photo shows one determined monkey clutching a puppy on a roof – as pets vanish from people’s homes.
The very young black and white puppy, named Saru, was recently grabbed by the primate.
The wild monkey took the pooch to the top of an electricity post in Taman Lestari Putra, Malaysia, on September 16, before leaping from roof-to-roof with it.
Footage of the “monkey catching dog incident” circulated on social media for several days, with some viewers assuming it was “fake news”, reports Oriental Daily.
Videos and photos showed the “big monkey hugging the puppy tightly” and escaping people trying to rescue it by leaping high onto a roof, or into the woods.
Residents told reporters the monkey was part of a wild primate gang known for stealing food from houses.
They are now also being blamed for the recent disappearance of cats and dogs that have been reported suddenly missing from homes.
Some residents have complained about the monkeys being aggressive, and even demanded extreme methods such as shooting them.
One onlooker, Cherry Lew Yee Lee, said: “The puppy looked tired and weary but the monkey did not seem to hurt it.
“The monkey was just holding the puppy while it moved around.
“It looked like it was treating the puppy as a friend or its baby, it was very strange.
“However, we still needed to save the poor dog because it appeared to have been starving.”
The puppy looked tired and weary but the monkey did not seem to hurt it.
Cherry Lew Yee Lee
Cherry and her neighbours went to the area where the monkey was regularly spotted with the puppy over several days.
But their rescue attempts repeatedly failed as they were too slow, with the creature fleeing along electricity lines and disappearing with the pooch into trees in the jungle.
And when locals did manage to entice it to come closer with fruit, the monkey refused to drop the puppy.
One Malay woman even tried to lure the monkey with a loaf of bread, reported The Smart Local.
Oriental Daily said the pup’s “wailing was heard from time-to-time” as it tried in vain to escape its captor’s clutches.
One of its rescuers, Francis Poh, who said he had had many years’ experience in rescuing cats and dogs in similar situations, said several “tricks” were used to try to retrieve the pup. But these all initially failed.
PUPPY ‘VERY WEAK’
Three days after the puppy had been snatched by the monkey, a concerned Poh, 39, met with several fellow animal lovers.
They quietly observed the primate gang for 45 minutes after discussing “countermeasures because monkeys are so smart and alert”.
The monkey holding the pup eventually descended onto a patch of grass, so locals managed to scare it by lobbing small rocks and chunks of wood.
The alarmed monkey released its hand, and the puppy fell onto the grass.
“After we successfully rescued the puppy, we found that it looked like it hadn’t been weaned, and it may have not eaten for many days, so it was very weak,” Poh said.
The pooch was rushed to a vet, who said that although there were no major injuries, it was suffering from slight swelling to the head, and was weak due to the lack of food for several days.
PUP A ‘PLAYMATE’
Poh said it appeared the monkey did not intend eating the pooch, but seemed to treat it as a playmate or its baby.
He added: “But after all, monkeys and dogs are different.
“They (monkeys) cannot properly take care of the puppy, so we still had to take the puppy’s health into consideration and save it.”
The puppy is now in a stable condition in its new home, after being nursed back to full health.
Poh said that the incident was a reminder to people that the incident showed how the over-exploitation of forests was causing wild animals to lose their homes and live closer to humans instead.
The Malaysian government receives an average of 3,800 complaints from the public about monkeys nationwide every year.
These have prompted the country’s wildlife department to devise a mass culling programme, resulting in up to 70,000 macaques killed annually between 2013 and 2016.
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