Villagers to fence off gap that trapped dog

PUBLISHED : Thursday, 29 January, 2009, 12:00am
UPDATED : Thursday, 29 January, 2009, 12:00am

A Sai Kung village plans to fence off a narrow gap between two ancestral halls after a dog got stuck there for four days and died despite a protracted rescue attempt this week.

Mang Kung Uk village's five heads will meet after the Lunar New Year holiday to discuss building the fence to prevent another tragedy.

Three-year-old female mongrel Bogi was discovered stuck in the gap between the Yu and Sing clans' ancestral homes on Saturday when a man heard her whimpering.

Four days of rescue efforts by the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, firemen, the Agriculture, Fisheries and Conservation Department and dog-lovers failed to free Bogi. She died on Tuesday after being shot with a tranquiliser dart and pulled from the gap. The cause of death has yet to be determined.

Villagers had thought she was pregnant and may have gone into the gap to have her puppies, but vets later found she had a tumour.

'Hopefully, this will prevent animals from going in,' village head Sing Hon-keung said of the planned fence. 'It might also help prevent kids who sometimes play in those gaps from going in.'

Mr Sing suggested that as well as building a steel fence to block the gap where Bogi got stuck, another fence should be built to block a gap in another adjacent ancestral hall. Three halls for the Yu, Sing and Lau clans to worship their ancestors stand in a row with narrow gaps between them.

Whether other villages should follow Mang Kung Uk's lead and fence off gaps between their ancestral halls was up to the Heung Yee Kuk rural assembly.

Teddy Ng Chun-wah, vice-president of the International Feng Shui Federation, said building a fence was an appropriate preventative measure and would not interfere with the temple's fung shui.

'Fung shui is for bringing happiness to all walks of life. Risking a life for fung shui is not correct,' he said.

The gap could be completely boarded up because it was against fung shui principles. It did not gather wind and air, but allowed them to escape. Refuse and garbage could also gather in the spaces, he said.

The department planned to collect Bogi's body from the SPCA yesterday and would conduct a post-mortem examination.

Mr Sing said it would be 'silly' and 'superstitious' to consider Bogi's death a bad omen.