Veröffentlicht am 19.12.2013
First part: Pallady public shelter
Romania’s stray dog problem has been an incendiary issue within the European Union for a couple months, even though the problem itself goes back several years. A civilized way — a way that EU recommends – of dealing with the stray dog problem is to start extensive sterilization and vaccination programs, and to try and encourage people to take responsibility of their pets.Romania chose differently.
The land of an estimated two million stray dogs enacted a law that is based on mass killing of stray dogs.
Mass killing is not considered a workable way of controlling big and rapidly growing numbers of animal populations. For example, it does not affect the resources necessary for dogs to reproduce effectively, but only creates more space for new populations to flourish. For the corrupted nation of Romania this suits fine, since stray dogs represent a way of making money. That is the only kind of value they have.
So, dogs are gathered from the streets and placed in public shelters. Public shelters are notorious for not taking care of the dogs they capture. Lots of dogs die of hunger, untreated illnesses and injuries.
One of the shelters in Bucharest, the capital, is Pallady, with its blue gates. Pallady has room for a couple of hundred dogs. First, when inside the shelter, I took notice of the strong, bad smell. Some cages were bursting with dogs. They mainly laid on the floor apathetically and were not interested in events taking place around them.
By 10 a.m., a crowd had gathered outside the gates of Pallady, to wait. Each of them was looking for a particular, lost dog. Out of the seven people my guide talked to, three were able to find their dogs. Four had to leave disappointed.
An elderly couple, for instance, was searching for a dog living near their home. They had not found him at the shelter of their own area, neither was the dog at the huge Mihailesti shelter nor at Pallady.
One lady was carrying an advertisement of her missing dog. Her neighbour had handed her dog to the dog catchers while she herself was away.
There was also the organization Eli for Animals, rescuing eight dogs from Pallady. The dogs had various kinds of health issues: there was malnutrition, a broken leg, a cut caused by the dog having been tied with wire, and eye problems. The dogs were very scared.
At 2:20 second part: Travelling with a Finnish rescue organization
Some of the shelters maintained by private animal protectors are very basic. Expensive investments are not necessarily worthwhile unless the shelter is guarded 24/7 since open shelters are prone to thefts and vandalism.
During their trip to Romania, the Finnish Rescue Association Hobo Dogs went to meet the dogs that are in their adoption program along with some new candidates.
The dog frolicking around the cage is Maya, a six-year-old female, who has spent at least five years of her life at the shelter. This is how she always welcomes guests. The older gentleman sharing the cage is Radu, who will have a future home in Germany. (Editor’s note: After this video was published, Maya was adopted. She is already in Finland at her new home and getting used to a very different kind of life.)
Large numbers of puppies are abandoned in Romania. It is very common for them — and for dogs in general — to be abandoned on the side of busy roads.
Some puppies end up in Rescue Association Hobo Dogs’ adoption program and are adopted to Finland. When selecting the puppies suitable for adoption the criteria resembles those applied to adult dogs: character, sociability and behaviour are the most crucial factors. If the puppy is too timid, it is not suitable for adoption.
Puppies that are adopted to Finland are at least about four month old. At that point their vaccination program is finished and the three-week waiting period following rabies vaccination is over. Besides vaccination, the dogs are tested for five different diseases, they receive multiple treatments against various parasites, a micro chip plus a passport.