Liverpool manager (Freshfields, not football club!) Helen and I have decided we must do something to help the Romanian dogs. We may have a burgeoning unwanted/stray dog problem in the Uk but few,if any, face the horrific treatment meted out to them that these poor creatures faced daily before rescue.
Theodora, the lady who gave shelter to these 300 abused dogs and did the best she could for them with limited funding , would want to know that they were not going to be rounded up by the authorities and killed. She saved them from this fate and believe me , many of the cases are truly shocking. Her sudden death 3 weeks ago has placed a question mark over the fate of the dogs and local English people are doing their utmost to find safe places for them in other countries.
The conditions at the shelter are basic and with recent weather conditions causing the temperature to drop to minus 20c and deep snow everywhere, there is little protection other than the wooden boxes provided for them to sleep in.
Between the two shelters we will be giving eight dogs the chance of a bright future. The rescue is set for April, after the dogs have had all their necessary injections/paperwork prepared. We have left the choice of animals to the helpers over there . They will choose the dogs they believe are most needy(what a difficult choice to make!) and we will eventually receive the details and photographs via email.
There will be those who criticise the decision we have made but Helen and I believe firmly that we cannot turn our backs on the situation.
If I did not have a back up system with this charity, and was entirely on my own without support , I would like to think that when I died, kind people would rally round to help the animals I had rescued!
We start to admit cats again.
At long last we can admit some of the cats waiting for places here. The main cattery is still off limits to newcomers but the old dog kennels which we use as isolation for new cats , is clear from infection now. The first to arrive came in yesterday.Suzy belonged to a young family and when she scratched one of the children, she found herself homeless. At the moment she is not too keen on being photographed so looks a little apprehensive but she is a lovely cat and I have high hopes she will be adopted fairly soon
Torrential rain has caused flooding in one of the stables.
This mornings downpour resulted in the shetlands stable being flooded. There was a veritable river gushing down from the top fields and the ditch we had dug at the back of the stables overflowed. The three shetland ponies have had to be temporarily evacuated to another part of the site, until we can dry out the stable and improve the drainage at the back of it. We have also had to move the ponies which were kept in that field.At the moment it is unfit for grazing ponies though the 4 sheep seem content enough and have managed to find dry land in the stonier parts of the field.
Feral cat Break out!
The feral cat enclosure is proving harder and harder to contain its inmates! Usually at least one makes a bid for freedom when the dinner lady enters with trays of food. They never go very far away but it needs to be more secure, so Dave is building a small porch which will provide the extra security needed when staff need to enter the enclosure to clean and feed the ferals. We have not found any suitable homes for any of the feral cats for a long time.We definitely need some good farm and stable type homes. Please let us know if any of you know anyone who could find space to take a couple of our cats to live outside in rural properties. They do need a shed or outbuilding which is secure enough to contain them for a month until they adapt and it is best to have minimum of two.They are less likely to wander off if they have companions. Ferals deserve homes too.
Interest in both new collies.
There are people interested in collies Merlin and Mindy which are currently in boarding kennels. I am about to find a home checker for Merlins prospective owners - they live in Cornwall. First I need to check what he is like with cats so we will have to bring him here to test him.
Before anyone calls the rspca to report us for cruelty, there is no risk to the cats!
All we do is walk the dog(on a lead) up to the cat enclosure and watch for a reaction. Some immediately change their body language to 'ready to attack' mode and we can see that they are not tolerant of felines. Others walk up nonchalantly and have a look, then walk away, totally indifferent.This is the reaction we are hoping for. Fingers crossed for Merlin being one of the latter.
Moles in the Shetland Field.
Strange mounds of earth have appeared in one of the fields. When I first spotted them I mistakenly thought that the staff were being lazy and instead of picking up the horse poo, they were just covering it up! Mei thought that highly amusing and told me that no, it wasn't the staff covering up manure, that we had an invasion of moles!
I have in the past been the unwilling recipient of the gift of a dead mole from one of the cats but I have never noticed these mounds before. I do hope that it does not mean more limp lifeless little moles being deposited in the conservatory. I'm sure not many country dwellers like them but I happen to be very fond of the little creatures and I would not like to see a mass slaughter occurring under my very nose.