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Help for Stray Dogs Arrives in Ukraine

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Help for Stray Dogs Arrives in Ukraine

From Four Paws International
March 2012

Countless stray dogs have been killed in the Ukraine, in the run-up to the UEFA Football Championship, which is due to start in June. FOUR PAWS will save thousands of stray dogs' lives by sending vets to various cities and towns in the Ukraine for a very special spay and neutering project.

Today (3/20/12), a convoy of 11 animal rescue vehicles - four mobile clinics, one bear ambulance, and six rescue cars – from the international animal welfare organization FOUR PAWS arrived in Kiev, Ukraine. There, Mykola Zlochevskiy, the Ukrainian Minister of Ecology and Natural Resources, welcomed the FOUR PAWS Team (veterinarians, specialists and activists from more than a dozen countries) by assuring full support for implementing a wide scale neutering and vaccination program for stray dogs in Ukraine.

“We are fully committed to helping stray animals as well as people in Ukraine with the only possible positive and practical solution: a long-term neutering program and commitment to limit stray dog populations and work for more humanity towards animals” Helmut Dungler, President and Founder of FOUR PAWS International said at today's press conference and added “this will only be possible if the Ukraine government is fully dedicated to enforcing a ban on killing dogs nationwide”.

The experts expect to be able to neuter thousands of dogs in the coming months. This unique program will now begin after intense negotiations and preparations which resulted in the signing of an Agreement between the Ukraine government and FOUR PAWS in February 2012.

Recent reports about continued dog killings prove there is no time to waste. The FOUR PAWS Program, which has been successfully implemented in various countries in recent years, uses the most advanced techniques for neutering stray animals. Vaccination, anti-parasite treatment and health checks are complementary to the neutering activities and carried out by internationally experienced experts. This approach is recognized and fully supported by the World Health Organization (WHO) and the European Parliament as the only sustainable solution.

“The logistical challenges are enormous. We invite everyone to JOIN OUR TEAM and support this project to become a success” states Dr. Amir Khalil, Project Lead at FOUR PAWS.

Together with experts from universities in Ukraine the FOUR PAWS Team will now begin intense training of veterinarians. The program is supported by the French Fondation 30 Millions d`amis and coordinates its efforts closely with the Association of the animal protection organizations in Ukraine (AZOU) and SOS Animals Kiev and other local animal welfare initiatives.

Activities starting immediately are the neutering of dogs in Kiev, including in shelters, and logistical preparation for activities to be undertaken in various cities across the country, including Lviv and Zaporizhia.

To control the population of the stray dogs in a humane way we will catch them, spay or neuter, provide medical treatment, chip and release them back into their former territory, the place that they know as home.

As of today, the cities Lviv and Saporischja have commited to stop killing strays if FOUR PAWS starts the project in their city. We are currently negotiating with other Ukrainian cities, in particular Kiev, Charkiw and Donezk. The logistical challenges are enormous, but if all goes according to plan our teams will start working in the Ukraine within the next days.

This is a huge project and a lot of work – approximately 10,000 stray dogs need our help in the Ukraine!

For such a big project we urgently need surgical instruments, bandages, medication, registration chips and mobile vet clinics. It will cost € 350,000 to neuter 10,000 dogs, so we urgently need your help. This is one of our biggest projects to date, simply because of the sheer volume of dogs to treat and the short amount of time we have to prove ourselves to the authorities with this method.