By Margaret Sheard ….

Madde H Gergin and Margaretha Linden organised a lunch and talk which was held on Saturday 2nd June at the Courtyard Inn, Karakum, hosted by Altin Patiler Derneği, in aid of the Vadili Dogs.

Kimi Watts with Teddy, a Shitzu, rescued from being a stud puppy

There were around 30 people who had come along to give support to the cause which was started by Kimi Watts and Irene Scott who discovered the sad plight of the Vadili dogs.

Following is the text Madde sent to me which gives the story of the start of the project to save them.

Today we want to introduce you to a very special group of dogs who are all in desperate need of help. These dogs have been left, totally isolated from the outside world for years, in deplorable conditions. Their stories all begin the same; abandoned, thrown out or found sick and injured on the streets. These 27 lives are maintained entirely by the kindness of 1 local woman, a responsibility we wish to alleviate in any way we can. Although all the dogs are of sound weights, apart from 4 recently dumped puppies, none are neutered and some are in desperate need of medical attention. Basic health care like internal and external parasite treatment is urgently needed. All dogs need to be blood tested for Leishmania and Erleichia to rule out and address any disease. The living conditions are far from ideal and must attribute to much of the health problems encountered. Dead rodents and faeces cover the wooden pallets meant for sleeping. Due to the remoteness of this shelter, the dogs are very vulnerable to attacks during the night by locals and the cages have been opened for the dogs to fight with one another. These dogs are desperate to step out of their cages for the first time and experience the love of a forever home ”.

Madde welcomed everyone to the event and said that both herself and Margaretha, are supporters trying to do something to help the numerous street animals, there are laws which are in existence but the Government do nothing to enforce them.  The way forward is neutering of street animals to reduce the ever growing numbers.  There is a law forbidding shops from selling puppies but again is this being monitored and enforced?   Madde asked everyone to spread the word and maybe someone will take notice and take action.

On a lighter note, Madde pointed out the large number of raffle prizes which had been donated, from Wines of the World, the Eye Clinic, Petline, Malatya Dog & Cat Hotel plus others for which they were very grateful.

Kimi then thanked everyone for coming to give support and spoke about the work which was being done to re-home the Vadili dogs and many others which still need the help of people who care.  She went on to say that 29 dogs were found at Vadili, unfortunately one died early on, and of the remaining 28 which they managed to take out of the appalling conditions, they had found homes for 25 in the UK and Germany.  They do not re-home in Cyprus although foster carers are used in the interim period of sorting out medical and paperwork procedures.

The event included lunch and so everyone had placed their orders for a starter and main course and were soon tucking in to a nice meal.  This was followed by the raffle and a short break before the talk, during which Lena Lindh and her daughter Ingrid, introduced 2 Labrador puppies which had been dumped at the Malatya Dog and Cat Hotel recently.  Lena is desperate to find a home for them.  They were so cute and many of the guests gave them a cuddle but I don’t think there were any takers that day, maybe someone will come forward and take one or both of them.  They were so well behaved, not a whimper from either of them and they seemed to enjoy the attention, although I seemed to detect a little sadness in their eyes.

We were then introduced to Merter Öktem of Dogmental, Lefkoşa, who is a well-known dog behaviour expert who studied in the USA and he proceeded to give a very interesting talk about understanding dogs and the way to communicate with them. He said a dog does not really understand what you are saying, it is a question of contact and body language and dogs have the intelligence to understand how they should react from tone of voice, gestures etc.   I would think that all of the guests were dog or cat owners and of course there were many questions which Merter tried to answer.  A little difficult for him without actually being able to engage with the dog in question but everyone seemed very satisfied with his response to their problems.

The Courtyard had generously donated 15TL from each meal served and the total raised during the afternoon, including the raffle, was 870TL, so a nice amount to go towards the work still being done to re-home the Vadili dogs.

Thank you to Altin Patiler Derneği, Madde Gergin, Margaretha Linden, Kimi Watts and Irene Scott for the wonderful work you are doing to help the street animals of North Cyprus.