Our personal experience of witnessing the huge stray dog problem whilst on holiday in areas such as the Greek Islands made us stop and think.
Wandering around holiday destinations sightseeing, we became aware of the number of dogs abandoned on the streets, and decided to seek out dog rescue shelters. On the plus side, we did indeed find them, on the down side many proved to be under-resourced, run by caring volunteers in need of funding and support.
In some areas, although we found shelters not too far apart from one another, they were unaware of each other’s existence, which meant that they were unable to share useful resources, such as transport for dogs offered adoption.
This is why we started The Dog Welfare Network – to inform holidaymakers where they can find dog rescue organisations to support and to make shelters aware of one another so that they can share resources where appropriate.
What we do not intend tourists to do is round up the local dogs they see and take them to the nearest shelter! This is unhelpful and counterproductive.
Instead, we suggest that you visit the shelters, taking gifts of food, bedding and other equipment if you can. Offer your services for dog walking or fund-raising, or leave a monetary donation if you are able. This then assists in caring for the dogs in the shelter and finding them adoptive homes, thus freeing up places to accommodate further strays.
Many centres offer neutering programmes, to reduce the number of future strays, and contributions towards these programmes are very welcome.
The Dog Welfare Network has created a website on which we will be adding details of dog rescue centres around Europe that would value your support. When planning your next holiday, be sure to see what shelters are near your chosen destination, so that you can help too.
Visit our website www.dogwelfarenetwork.co.uk and click on the country in question. If you visit any of the shelters listed, we would value your feedback via firstname.lastname@example.org
Thank you for your support.