Bhutan has declared itself the first country to have a fully sterilized and vaccinated stray dog population, according to a recent announcement from Humane Society International (HSI).

The monumental achievement comes after 14 years of work from Bhutan’s Dog Population Management and Rabies Control Project and HSI.

With the help of international charities, local organizations, and thousands of volunteers, more than 150,000 stray dogs have been sterilized and vaccinated since 2009, according to Down To Earth.

“HSI could not have found a more committed humane street dog management partner than the Royal Government of Bhutan,” HSI-India’s Senior Director of Companion Animals and Engagement Keren Nazareth said. “We congratulate the people of Bhutan for this extraordinary dog-friendly success which brings enormous benefits to the local communities.”

The project also has improved public awareness of dog welfare and has helped to reduce human-dog conflicts, according to World Animal News.

Bhutan’s incredible achievement has spread inspiration internationally, with the World Health Organization and the United Nations encouraging countries to enhance their stray dog programs by including oral rabies vaccinations, according to Down to Earth.

Lady Freethinker congratulates the Kingdom of Bhutan and HSI on this monumental victory in animal welfare and urges other nations to take inspiration from their success.