Month: July 2014

Ursa – carried to safety

Beautiful Ursa

Beautiful Ursa

A couple of weeks ago we came across Ursa.  She was found lying in the woods, too weak and emaciated to stand, with her bones protruding out, and her body covered in sores as a result.  Half of her fur was gone, the rest matted and filthy. We see many horrific things in Romania and it is cases like this were one really gasps, filled with dismay at the horror.  Yet, despite all her pain and discomfort she clearly was a wonderful dog, wagging her tail and looking happy.  Despite her matted fur, what remained around her face showed that despite her poor condition she was a beautiful dog.

How we found her

How we found her

Ursa being carried to safety

Ursa being carried to safety

Enjoying the wind in her fur en route to safety

Enjoying the wind in her fur en route to safety

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Terrible sores and bones

Terrible sores and bones

Ursa was also lucky.  She was found and carried to safety.  She was taken to vets where her wounds were disinfected and she was given food, which she wolfed down.  She was safe.

Today, two weeks later, the change is remarkable.  The bag of bones and sores has flourished in foster care at the vet’s.  She has put on weight and her sores are healing.  She has also had a haircut and she plays with toys in her foster care.  It is hard to imagine that this is the same dog that was scooped from death’s arms a couple of weeks ago.  She wags her tail when she sees you, just as she did when she was struggling to survive, and she is a happy dog, full of love.

Sporting her new haircut

Sporting her new haircut

Here is a young dog that was very close to death, starving with who knows how many days left to live, and in pain, who has flourished with just a bit of love and care.  She is not only clearly a beautiful dog on the outside, she also has a soul of gold, with a real joy-de-vivre that you would not expect so soon after her near death experience.  Ursa is a testament to life and the power of a bit of TLC mixed with an amazing inner strength.  She is an amazing young lady.

Excited at getting treats

Playing ball

Ursa still has a way to go to recover, and grow her lovely fur back, but she is going to make the most wonderful, joyful addition to a forever family.

Please share her story and showcase the work we do.  How we go out every day and rescue dogs, carrying them in our arms to safety.  How we somehow  convince vets to treat based only on debt, and how despite all our limited resources and personal exhaustion we continue to save dog after dog.  For dogs like Ursa we are their only hope and we can only continue to save dogs like her through our supporters continuing commitment, through people sharing our posts and making donations, big or small.  Join us in saving more dogs.  Join us is bringing Ursa to a forever family, where she will never again be hungry or alone.

Ursa with our founder Aniela

Ursa with our founder Aniela

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Little teddy bears abandoned

19.07.14_1Yet again 3 little puppies have been dumped at the shelter, unwanted and unloved, thrown out like rubbish.  How anyone could abandon such adorable little teddy bears I will never understand, but that is daily life in Romania.  Perhaps it was because they are little girls, which would more puppies in the future?  Again this is typical – rather than neuter their dogs many Romanians just dump or, even worse kill, unwanted puppies.

Fortunately for these little puppies there were dumped the day a group of foster babies left their foster mum to be to forever homes outside of Romania, making space for these new arrivals.  We took in these little bundles of fluff and they are now safe, in loving hands and being cared for until we can find them their own loving forever homes.

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These little ladies and only 2 1/2 months old and as you see they really are teddy bears.  Given their size already they will most likely grow into medium or large dogs.

However in order to grow up we need to deworm and vaccinate them.  We will also need to give them names and eventually find them forever homes.  In order to do this we need your support and help.  Please consider becoming a “remote foster” parent and funding their care or just make a small donation to help cover their vet bills.  Perhaps you have fallen in love with them and could give one of them a forever home?  Or perhaps you can share their photos so that someone else sees them and falls in love with them?  Give these teddies a chance for life.19.07.14_12

If you want to donate a little to help us cover all the debts we have for their veterinary treatments, private foster and food, you can use
Paypal: Hopeforstrays@yahoo.com
Accounts Hope for Romanian Strays Organisation :
Euro Account: RO24RZBR0000060014905466
Swift Code: RZBR ROBU
Ron Account: RO30RZBR0000060014905455
THANK YOU!!!

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Dr XXXX Fundraising Campaign

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Recently I was blogging on my other, work-related blog, and I made a bit of a mistake.  I was talking about a disease tweetchat, #CHATafib, organised by Boehringer Ingelheim, and I had wanted to mention of the doctors who had supported @boehringer, but I could not remember his name, so I typed Dr.XXXX with a view to double checking once I got online to post.  Except I forgot.  I posted the post talking about Dr.XXXX!

Rather than panic and try to hide my mistake I wrote a post about my mistake and mistakes in social media. This included the example of the Red Cross and their drunk tweet that resulted in a blood donation drive.  This led me the idea of using my mistake to do the same thing, but for Hope for Romanian Strays.  I decided to make the somewhat remote link of the Dr to the vet and the XXXX to the three main medical things we need funds for our dogs and puppies – vaccination, food and neutering.

For those too weak to stand we are there to scoup them up and bring them hope

For those too weak to stand we are there to scoup them up and bring them hope

So here we are.  Maybe you are here are a result of my mistake and this is the first time you have heard about the work Hope for Romanian Strays does.  Or maybe you are one of our regular supporters.  Either way the message to you is simple.  Please help us save the lives of these poor souls who have had the misfortune of being born in a country where they are more likely to die of abuse, starvation or disease than ever experience the love and happiness a dog should do.  If they are lucky they end up in the Bucov shelter where we can try to help them – if we have funds.  If they are unlucky they die in absolute misery and pain – terrified and alone.  All you need do is look at the photos of Romanian strays – look into the eyes of these innocent souls and see the pain and torment.  See them looking at the camera asking “Why”.  What did I do wrong to deserve being beaten to death?  What did I do wrong to starve and freeze to death?  Why do you hate me so much to deliberately run me over and leave me to die.  Why did you enclose me and my mother in a bag and throw us in a ditch to die – and why did my mother have to die biting a hole through which we could escape but she couldn’t?

Why were we left to die in a field?

Why were we left to die in a field?

These are of course horrific questions – but these are the daily reality of strays in Romania.  This is why I am so passionate to help and this is why I am asking you laugh at my Dr XXX mistake but help me turn it into something positive and use it to help at least one dog out of misery and pain.  The cost to you is not that much, but the outcome for the dog is life changing.  So please – donate to @hopeforstrays and save a life. Or if you cannot donate then please share our campaign and help us get the message out there.  The more people who know about our work the more support we get and ultimately the more dogs we can get to safety.

Providing food for the dogs in the over-crowded shelter

Providing food for the dogs in the over-crowded shelter

Trying to fight the battle and reduce the number of strays through neutering programmes

Trying to fight the battle and reduce the number of strays through neutering programmes

Not leaving to die, old, blind and alone on the streets.

Not leaving to die, old, blind and alone on the streets.

When they are fit and healthy again we help find them homes

When they are fit and healthy again we help find them homes

We have over 100 happy tails this year so far - support us to give more dogs a new life

We have over 100 happy tails this year so far – support us to give more dogs a new life

A heartfelt plea for support from our founder

While I support Hope for Romanian Strays remotely our founder Aniela is on the ground 12+ hours a day, every day, working tirelessly to save the poor stray and injured dogs in Ploiesti and the Bucov shelter.  She has given up her job, most of her home and I suspect much more, to be able to dedicate herself to saving these animals. Fortunately she has a very supportive family and a great network of online friends who try to help as much as possible.

Just another normal day – an emergency treatment at the shelter

Just another normal day – an emergency treatment at the shelter

Sometimes however the burden she carries and the daily horrors she has to witness come through.  I wanted to share Aniela’s post recently which I think shows how desperate the situation is and is a very genuine plea for extra support.  Please take a minute to read her plea

Day after day we are trying everything to change for the better the terrible fate of dogs in the public shelter, we try to complain less and to be there more.
Our brave vets are doing their very best to do something with…nothing!
There is no table of consultation for them, no vet room, just our permanent requests to treat one sick dog then another!
We owe fortunes for treatments, vaccines, dewormings, blood tests, surgeries, but we have no time or energy to complain, we just have to shoulder our debts, rely on our special vets and we have them, the poor dogs in need.
Two of the sweet souls here and many others that we tried to save died in the last 24 hours and we are unable to cry for their loss or for the debts left behind after treating them simply because we have many other souls under treatment waiting to be saved!” Aniela Ghita, founder of Hope for Romanian Strays

The other face of normality in the shelter

The other face of normality in the shelter

If you are as touched and sad as I was to read this plea, then please if you can help through donations, fundraising or awareness raising.  We are 100% dependent on donations and every penny goes to the dogs.  Aniela goes through this struggle daily – please support this amazing woman by helping those that are dearest to her – the stray and injured dogs of Bucov.

One of the “lucky” Romanian strays in that he ended up in Aniela’s care

One of the “lucky” Romanian strays in that he ended up in Aniela’s care

A starving, sick dog – sadly a common sight in Romania

A starving, sick dog – sadly a common sight in Romania

Sadly another very sick and emaciated dog close to death

Sadly another very sick and emaciated dog close to death