Aid for Ukraine Animals
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5 Feb 2022 Update
It has been an incredibly busy few months since our last update. Despite the ban on the transport of animals to the UK being lifted the cost of living crisis has now taken a firm hold across the UK and Europe and there has been a steep decline in adoptions for rescues all over the UK and Europe.
We had hoped that once the ban was lifted we would be able to bring some of the dogs to the UK for rehoming but sadly the decline in adoptions and lack of rescue spaces meant that other than a few dogs that found homes with our volunteers we have not been able to move any more. Several dogs have gone to our friends at ROLDA in Sweden and have been rehomed and we will continue to work with ROLDA to find more homes.
We did manage to complete the upgrades to the shelter late last year before the really cold weather came so every dog now has a lovely brick built house and lots of warm straw bedding that gets replaced frequently. We expect that more upgrades and repairs will be needed in the coming months.
In October we were fortunate enough to find a lady in the UK who was happy to spend time out in Romania to manage the shelter for us and she stayed until December to co-ordinate the transports of the dogs that did leave and deal with the day to day running of the shelter and ensuring the dogs were happy. We are working on visa issues for her to return and hope to have her back there very soon.
Food supply became an issue over the last few months, because of the increases in fuel costs, maintenance of our vehicle, lack of storage space and a general slowing of food donations it was no longer viable to send vans from the UK to Romania to resupply the shelter so we were left facing bills of approx €3000 ever 6 weeks to purchase food locally, this is on top of we pay pension costs for every dog every month and vet bills every month and in the next few months we will also be looking at yearly booster vaccines for the dogs still at the shelter. Thankfully we came across and org called Paws Hope who run store fronts for rescues across the region that allow for supporters to buy a bag of dog food and donate it to their chosen rescue and once 60 have been purchased they are delivered directly to the shelter, this has been a life saver and we are well on the way to our second delivery. Details on how to help with this can be found here
We wanted the dogs to have a special treat at Christmas so plans were made for a massive amount of meat to be purchased and every dog got a meal of meatballs and sausages on Christmas day which they absolutely loved.
Over the coming months we will be looking to try and send some more dogs to Sweden and also bringing a few at a time to the UK for rehoming, we do need to set this up on our website so please give us some time to do this, we have just 1 employee in the UK who is responsible for managing the Iraq project and this project and there are only so many hours in a day!
18 October 2022 Update
The summer has come to an end all too quickly and we are now heading for some pretty cold and horrible weather in the winter months at the shelter in Romania. Whilst we had hoped we would have all of the dogs rescued from Ukraine in safe, loving homes by now the DEFRA ban on dogs coming into the UK and the endless blood tests and veterinary checks that had to be done has delayed rehoming. Most of the dogs are now ready to be rehomed, they are vetted, have passed their FAVN blood tests and have done the 3 month waiting time but the DEFRA ban remains in place with a new update due on 28 October 2022. We know we will not be able to get all of the dogs out before winter hits hard even if the ban is lifted so the last 2 months have been spent doing massive upgrades to the shelter so we can keep our lovely dogs safe and warm throughout the winter.
The upgrades have been expensive but the dogs are worth it but now we need to really work hard to try and bring in the much needed donations to keep the dogs fed and safe whilst they await rehoming. Every donation, no matter the amount, truly does make a difference and helps us to ensure that the 90+ dogs in our care DO NOT become forgotten animals of war. We know that times are tough but please donate if you can and please share our fundraiser.
Thank you for walking beside us on this journey, it means the world not just to us but also to the dogs.
17 July 2022 Update
We are sorry….we have been not so great at keeping this fundraiser updated so here we are with a long awaited update!
In June we suffered the unexpected loss of our rescue partner Dogbus, when the founder of the org, Kris, passed away unexpectedly. Kris had been instrumental in making this project happen and she is missed beyond belief but we will continue the project that she poured blood sweat and tears into, we will not fail her or the many dogs she helped to rescue.
It has been crazy busy at the shelter in Romania that is currently home to 97 dogs most of whom were rescued from Ukraine. Louise did a very quick 3 days trip to Romania a few weeks ago to start the process of titre testing with the lovely Romanian vet who is taking care of the medical needs of our dogs. In 3 days we managed to get the bloods drawn for 77 of the 97 dogs and those samples are now at the lab in the UK and we hope to start seeing the results in about a week. Some of the dogs at the shelter are actually Romanian so as soon as we have the titre tests back we will be working with European Rescues to find them fosters and placements as the British government extended the ban until September, on animals from Ukraine, Romania, Poland and Belarus a few days ago and we simply do not expect the ban to just go away. The dogs who came from Ukraine who have had their titres done will remain at the shelter in Romania until the 3 month wait time has passed and the can be moved legally.
There has been some major renovations going on at the shelter on Romania, a new kennel block is being built, a quarantine section for new arrivals is being built and in time an onsite clinic will be built. As well as all this we have been ensuring weekly vet visits to the shelter, making sure every dog is vaccinated, chipped, treated for internal and external parasites and blood tests for all the usual illnesses we see from the EU and Ukraine regions.
As well as this we have funded another food transport run to Poland and we have also provided life saving funding for Odessa Cat Crew to help them keep going with the many cats and dogs in their care in Ukraine.
Your donations have been hard at work and we are more grateful than you can imagine but as expected we have seen a steep decline in donations for the animals of Ukraine, we understand, the cost of living crisis is kicking butt all over the world but we want you to know we will not give up, your support is making a difference and we will ensure these dogs are cared for and we would ask that you continue to share our fundraiser even if you cannot donate.
27 March 2022 Update
It has been just over 3 weeks since War Paws partnered with Breaking the Chains and DogBus to go into Ukraine and extract as many animals as possible and resupply shelters that had been left with no access to food and medical supplies….we always knew it would be a mammoth task but we did not let that stop us.
In just over 3 weeks this amazing coalition has managed to extract over 600 cats and dogs and even a lion! The first of the animals extracted are now ready to come to the UK for rehoming.
Given how quickly this project grew we now want to expand it so we can help more animals so the fabulous group of organisations listed below have partnered and will work together to help even more animals.
Breaking The Chains Media
Rushton Dog Rescue
A Better Life Dog Rescue
In order for an animal rescued from Ukraine to enter the UK for rehoming they must first complete a quarantine period in Romania where they will receive the following care
- Core Vaccines + Rabies Vaccine
- Flea/Tick and Deworming Treatment
- Screening for Canine Brucellosis, Babesia, Leishmaniosis, Erlichia, heartworm
- Any other veterinary treatment
Once the quarantine period has passed these animals will legally be able to be transported to the UK where they will be housed with Rushton Dog Rescue and to various countries across the EU where there are rescues waiting for them. All animals will be provided with lifetime rescue backup from the orgs that take them on.
To be able to keep this mission going we need you more than ever, not only do we need to get the rescue facility in Romania completed but we need to source more vehicles, pay for veterinary care, get staff to run the shelter, the list is endless. This is not going to be something we can do on a shoestring budget, we want to do this properly to ensure the absolute best care we can give these animals so we are increasing the amount we are working to raise to £500,000.
£500,000 sounds like a lot but it really isn’t when we are talking about a potential 3000 + animals who all need veterinary care and shelter before they can be transported to another country for rehoming. We will also be working towards providing a mobile spay/neuter unit that can be used by rescues in Romania by way of our extreme appreciation of the Romanian rescue community really stepping up and providing accommodation and veterinary care for these animals in their darkest hour of need.
War Paws has been busy behind the scenes since the war in Ukraine started a little under 2 weeks ago. We have been working with trusted Ukrainian rescue partners and with Dogbus, Purrfect Pet Transport, and Breaking the Chains to provide much needed food and supplies to Ukraine and distributing to rescues around the country.
Purrfect Pet Transport arrived in Poland a few days ago and have now handed over their supplies to the rescues who are going into and out of Ukraine every day for distribution.
DogBus are heading over this week with an initial 5 tons of food and supplies and will meet up with Tom and Steve from Breaking the Chains, who will work together to get food and supplies into the country and get animals out to rescue partners who are set up to take them.
War Paws will use all funds raised here to support trusted partners in their efforts to help rescues in Ukraine get the supplies they need and evacuate animals to safety. We expect to spend the majority of the funds on food, medical supplies, and fuel.
We do not advocate for civilians to enter Ukraine and strongly advise those wanting to help on site to stay on the safe side of the border.