An Abandoned Chow and Daschund Rescued in South Africa
The International Fund for Animal Welfare's Lisa Cant-Haylett reports on the rescue of two dogs by IFAW’s Dog & Cat Project in Johannesburg, CLAW, from Soul City, Johannesburg.
We are in Soul City and together with Cora, vet Saskia Karius and vet nurses Jen Gerner and Katie Suddard, we head off down the muddy roadway inbetween homes in Soul City to locate dog and cat owners to inform them that they should visit CLAW’s mobile van to have their animals treated.
We spot some puppies playing in a nearby yard and the elderly owners come towards the gate as Cora approaches the house. Cora asks them about the pups and their mother, whether they are eating, if there are any problems, they say no and Cora suggests they bring them down to the van for a checkup and treatment (vaccination and deworming). After some deliberation as to how they will manage carrying all the puppies to the van, they agree and say they will make a plan.
The neighbourhood is relatively quiet, with most residents either at work or out looking for work and older children at school. We pass a few more homes and are told no dogs and cats live there, so move on inbetween the puddles left by a recent downpour. As we near the site where the mobile van is parked, the team spots two dogs, a chow and a daschund chained up amongst a pile of discarded metal and wooden furniture/appliances. The daschund is almost “lost” inbetween all the rubble and would have been missed if not for the chow, who is chained up in close proximity to her, and her desperate barking. Both dogs bark intently as we near the fence of the property in which they are chained. Cora finds her way onto the property and chats to a neighbour of the lady on whose property the dogs are chained up. He explains that the woman has moved away and left the dogs without making any arrangements for their care and goes on to say that he has been feeding them in her absence.
They are clearly pedigree dogs and are in fairly good condition, but obviously stressed from having been tied up on chains, no longer than 60 cm, and without any human contact for who knows how long. Cora asks us not to make too much of a fuss of the dogs in order not to raise suspicion with the residents and we head on to the mobile to begin the day’s treatments.
The pups and mother dog have arrived with their elderly owners, for their checkup’s and treatment, and the team sets to work on vaccinating, deworming, top-spotting and general check-ups to see that everyone is keeping well. The impact of CLAW’s regular visits to Soul City over the years is evident with the fact that most dogs living in Soul City have been spayed or neutered, their coats are in good condition, they are healthy looking and most of them display “happy” temperaments, tails wagging as their owners amble back to their homes.
Mobile is complete for the morning and Cora and Saskia head on back to the property to unchain the chow and the daschund. As Cora and Saskia lean down to untie the chains and Cora lifts the daschund up into her arms, it’s a great feeling to see the relief of the dogs and their rescuers after being rescued as Saskia bends down and gives the chow a rub and shares a few happy words with him, assuring him that all is okay now.
The chow is currently still at the CLAW clinic waiting for a home. Cora has already found a home for the little dasshie. ;)
For more information on IFAW efforts to help animals in crisis in Africa, visit: http://www.ifaw.org