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This is an excellent documentary about stray dogs in Romania:

Man's Best Friend - Film (English) from Eastern Europe Stories on Vimeo.

(I wrote the following before having discovered the above doc, produced in 2012, so there may be some repetition of information but this will bring you somewhat up-to-date.)

Stray dogs have been having a hard time in Romania (link has graphic content) for a while now. Many consider the dogs to be pests and sometimes dangerous pests. There are thousands of reported dog bites every year and also a few deaths and of course the dogs, being voiceless, are always at fault.

The most recent cull in 2013/2014 was started when a four year old boy was killed by allegedly stray dogs. In response, hundreds of thousands of dogs were shot, poisoned or beaten to death. Some were simply tortured in retaliation (graphic) because somehow that makes sense to some people. In the end, it turned out the dogs who had killed the child weren't stray dogs at all but were privately owned "guard" dogs. The owners were charged with manslaughter.

Regardless of the outcome of that investigation, the cull continues and the majority of stray dogs still live, and die, like vermin.

The stray dog population is an issue regardless of which side of the love/hate divide a person sits. And being human, the preferred solution is slaughter so slaughter it is but there is pressure from EU countries for dog culls to at least be done humanely through euthanasia.

1 Comment to “A Short, Recent History of Stray Dogs in Romania”

  1. Thank you for not posting those graphics directly. Been there, seen that, can't bear to see it while I am here and powerless to intervene.

    You GO, bro! Save a few, save the world!

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A request

The reason for this blog is to help get specific dogs adopted from TAS but equally important is to try to normalize the idea of shelter dogs being just as good and just as desirable as any other dogs including those which are regularly merchandised by backyard breeders, puppy millers and those few remaining pet store owners who still feel a need to sell live animals. The single greatest stigma shelter animals still face is the belief that shelter animals are substandard animals. Anyone who has had enough experience with shelter animals knows this is untrue but the general public hasn't had the same experiences you've had. They see a nice dog photo in a glossy magazine and too many of them would never think of associating that dog with a dog from a shelter. After all, no one abandons perfectly good dogs, right? Unfortunately, as we all know, perfectly good dogs are abandoned all the time.

The public still too often associates shelter dogs with images of beat up, sick, dirty, severely traumatized animals and while we definitely sometimes see victims such as these, they are certainly not the majority and, regardless, even the most abused animals can very often be saved and made whole again.

Pound Dogs sometimes discusses the sad histories some of the dogs have suffered. For the most part, though, it tries to present the dogs not as victims but as great potential family members. The goal is to raise the profiles of animals in adoption centers so that a potential pet owner sees them as the best choice, not just as the charity choice.

So, here's the favour I'm asking. Whenever you see a dog picture on these pages you think is decent enough, I'd like you to consider sharing it on Facebook or any other social media sites you're using (I know many of you do this already and thank you for that). And when you share it, please mention that the dog in the photo is a shelter dog like so many other shelter dogs waiting for a home. If we can get even five percent of the pet buying public to see shelter dogs differently, to see how beautiful they are and how wonderful they are, and to consider shelter dogs as their first choice for a new family member, we can end the suffering of homeless pets in this country.