Caring for any animal should be a wonderful experience, they give so much in terms of love, companionship and laughter and yet, they ask for so little in return - a safe place to sleep, some food to eat and a kind word. But not every dog has the opportunity to access even these basic needs. Whilst here in the UK, most have the chance of living happy and fulfilled lives, it is a very different story for the majority of dogs in Romania .
In 2017, having heard about the conditions of animals in Romania we travelled as volunteers to work in the local shelters. It was whilst there, we witnessed first-hand, the deprivation, suffering and hopelessness of abandoned dogs in Adjud, Romania and decided to do something about it.
After meeting and working alongside a small group of Romanian volunteers and seeing their selfless dedication to helping the dogs with no external assistance, it broke our hearts and the decision was made to help the local team by providing funding and support.
From the outset it became clear that the idea of re-homing all of these abused and neglected dogs would be an impossible task, instead, the focus would be on improving the conditions in the shelter and on regular spay and neuter programs within the local community to alleviate the growing problem.
From the outset our ethos has always been:
Provide adequate food, shelter & medical support
Vaccinate and spay every dog entering the shelter and in the wider community as able
Build outside spaces “Free Runs” to allow the dogs the opportunity of mental physical stimulation and enrichment
Actively communicate to you, our supporters, all of the successes we achieve together
Dogs in Adjud
The area is rural with most people surviving on low incomes and with limited outlook on animal welfare. Dogs within the city, are either kept in yards on chains as a deterrent for theft, many without shelter and with limited food. Other dogs are left to roam the streets, until they are either caught, knocked over in traffic or perish in some other savage manner - even small dogs kept as indoor pets are often abandoned If they get sick or old.
Adjud Public Shelter
This currently houses over 400 dogs, many of whom have been there for years in the same cells or cages. Prior to our support, all of the dogs were suffering mentally, some going mad with frustration, others traumatised from abuse, hiding from fear of attack, cowering in the darkness and the rest had just resigned themselves to living there until they die, their eyes glazed and lifeless.
We saw the need, not only to support the dogs with the basic humane necessities of decent food, adequate shelter and medical treatment but also to improve and enrich their quality of life.
Annie’s Trust gained UK charitable status as an animal welfare charity in 2019