It was one of the many appeals on FB, but this time STD was so close to the reported case that we could not close our eyes.

On a Bucharest animal welfare association call, that had been contacted by a Roamanian lady, we were asked to help an undernourished dog, that had been thrown in a wretched yard in a village between Cernavoda and Costanza together with her puppies.

The dog – medium size, friendly and loving – let us take her without fighting and she was transferred to our Medgidia shelter, in spite of the chronic overcrowding that is unfortunately constant in our structure.

After a few weeks, here are the pictures of Marina (this is the way she has been renamed), that has 2 big meals a day and has already gained a healthier look. As soon as possible Marina will be part of DogRescue adoption program, one of the two STD Swedish partners.

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We are very happy to inform our supporters and partners that our new Footprints of Joy dogs shelter will be completed according to the initially foreseen schedule and modalities.

Further to our appeal on latest December, when the works were about to be blocked due to the fall in donations, thousands of people went into action to offer a 10 euros brick, while some supporters and foreigner partners gave more considerable donations. This has enabled us to reach the amount needed to complete boxes and facilities, as well as the outside (crossovers, gates and fences on the whole area). Here is the ultimate statement of the costs which will entirely covered thanks to this extraordinary fund-raising:

  • Contratto building company: 303.800 Euro
  • Building materials bought by STD: 50.000 Euro
  • Arrangement of the outdoor area (crossovers, gates and fences etc.): 30.000 Euro (estimation)

Consequently, the site has been restarted after the Christmas break, and will now proceed until May, when we expect to be able to move our 350 guests to their brand new boxes.

Such a great news confirms the affection and trust that thousands of people in Italy and abroad feel towards our association, and gives us a boost to go ahead with this challenging project, with great significance both for STD and Romanian dogs.

We would like to take this opportunity to mention all the associations which have contributed to the fund-raising: our partners Hundhjalpen and Friends of Homeless Dogs, as well as Nancy Janes and her Romanian Animal Rescue (who spread our call in the USA), the English foundation Dogs Trust, Italian Enpa and LAV (by means of their national headquarters but also with the support of several local branches), Turin association La Pulce and our Montecarlo delegation.

Thanks to this valuable outcome, STD is now able to start thinking about the new veterinary clinic, already in the pipeline. The ultimate phase of Footprints of Joy project will be presented on the association’s websites and Facebook.

We remind to the supporters that despite the successful fund-raising in aid of the refuge, STD financial situation is still difficult and the risk of being forced to restrict the existing activities during 2012 is constantly around the corner.

In particular, if in the coming months the funds are inadequate for carrying out medical and veterinary activities and international adoptions, we will be obliged to cut sterilizations and dogs’ flights towards Italy, two of our fundamental tasks on which the life of thousands animals relies on. We hope to keep having your support during 2012, as to go on building a better future for our treasured Romanian stray dogs.

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Like every year during this period, Save the Dogs performs a review of international adoptions which have allowed a certain number of lucky Romanian former strays to join a family overseas.

Compared to 2010, we have recorded a slight decline of departures, that is -40 animals, with the usual primacy from the north of Italy (308 between dogs and cats) followed by Sweden (148 adopted dogs), Finland (50 adoptions) and Switzerland (43 quadrupeds settled in many families).  As for the origin of the animals, 282 were from the Cernavoda shelter, 274 from Medgidia (but about sixty came from Limanu, a place often visited by our mobile clinic) while 2 came from Bucharest and 3 from Costanza. To view all the figures in detail, you can visit the relevant section of the website which records yearly the numbers of animals which leave and where they go to.

We would like to remind our supporters that while the adoptions from Northern Europe and from and the Italian-speaking Switzerland have covered the costs; all costs of travel toward Italy have been self-funded by STD.  We would like to take this opportunity to thank all those who decided to give a “put on the wings” cube during the festive season, thanks to these donations, 116 flights have been sponsored which offer salvation to lots of fortunate puppies.

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With a real dramatic turn of events today, the Romanian Constitutional Court has approved the observations on the unconstitutionality of the kill-stray law and it has been returned to parliament demanding revision; the appeal to the Constitutional Court was made by about ten members of the Romanian parliament belonging to the opposition (PNL and PSD) and from thousands of defenders of animal rights who have mobilized against the measure both at the national as well as international level.
This is a severe defeat for the President Traian Basescu and the loyal Minister Elena Udrea, the major supporters of a law that could have potentially allowed the mayors to decide freely the fate of strays. The other big defeat is the political-economic lobby connected to the majority party, not uniquely though, who with the management of strays always do a roaring trade. Despite hundreds of Romanian small towns, the slaughter of those poor strays continues regardless of the law in force. The decision of the constitutional court represents a precedent of strategic importance that can no longer be ignored by the commissions that will regain control of the situation. For years animal activist associations, with Save the Dogs in the forefront have asked for a plan of prevention and fight against straying which includes the creation of a register for dogs and the mandatory sterilization of stray dogs under ownership, however, their requests have always been ignored. It is highly likely that from tomorrow, the Romanian government must take all the above-mentioned into account before re-presenting, like countless times before, the provision in parliament.

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