bali dog history

History & Highlights

We’ve come a long way together.


After years of informally rescuing animals on her own, American expat and jeweler Janice Girardi opens the first veterinary clinic in the Ubud area.


Bali Animal Welfare Association is founded and officially registered as a nonprofit, funded by the income from Janice’s Bali-based jewellery company, Janice Girardi Designs. The organisation employs a staff of over 100 people.


The rabies outbreak grips Bali and dogs are culled in the hundreds of thousands. BAWA steps in to spearhead a pilot mass vaccination program to stop the brutal killings.

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Sterilisation program is launched.


BAWA partners with the International Fund for Animal Welfare (IFAW) on a village-based health and education program to engage communities at the village level.


Program Dharma, a one-health initiative promoting healthy and safe communities, is officially launched in Sanur, in cooperation with IFAW and Udayana University.

We partner with Dogs Trust Worldwide to develop our existing Education Program into a robust team of full-time teachers, delivering dog welfare classes in schools across three regencies of Bali.

The Mt. Agung volcano erupts for the first time in 53 years. BAWA rushes to the aid of the animals, launching efforts to rescue, evacuate, support, and shelter thousands of stray and owned dogs from the danger zone. Read more


Indonesia’s first ever village regulation (Perdes) is signed in Sanur Kaja, officially banning dog cruelty including poisoning, dumping of puppies, and the dog meat trade.


The COVID-19 pandemic hits Bali, crumbling the island’s tourism-fed economy and causing unprecedented hardships for people and animals alike. In response to the rising number of animals falling into neglect, BAWA kicks into high gear to support and monitor the health and well-being of thousands of stray and owned animals, as our rescue centres continue to fill up.


An earthquake in the Karangasem region of Bali destroys hundreds of homes and displaces families and animals. BAWA’s Disaster Relief team launches aid efforts for humans and animals alike making daily deliveries of dog food, water, basic food stuffs, supplies, and building materials to help the local community to get back on their feet.

Culminating from two years of work by Program Dharma, the Purwa Kerthi village in Karangasem signs a new regulation officially banning the dog and cat meat trade in it’s entirety and defining proper standards of animal care and welfare.


BAWA persists in working tirelessly both on the ground and behind the scenes to relieve suffering and improve the lives of animals in Bali, now and into the future. Read More >>

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