Three dogs from Romania have arrived at Battersea Dogs & Cats Home travelling under the Passport for Pets scheme. The dogs were sent to England because of overcrowding at a Romanian rehoming centre for street dogs, and will be cared for by Battersea until they find new homes.
The Romanian shelter is a joint project between Battersea Dogs & Cats Home, Dogs Trust and Northshore Animal League International, which aims to control the street dog population in the city of Oradea. The project is based on the humane principle of ‘catch, neuter and return / rehome’, and has been so successful that animal lovers in surrounding towns have been bringing dogs to Oradea.
These dogs cannot be returned once neutered, as local authorities in towns without a humane policy still shoot or poison strays, so this has led to a large increase in the number of dogs at the centre. A dog-loving businessman who owns a factory in Romania heard about the overcrowding, and kindly paid for a number of dogs to go through Passports for Pets. The other dogs are being cared for and rehomed by The Mayhew Animal Home & Human Education Centre in Kensal Green, North London.
Battersea’s Director General, Duncan Green said: ‘Battersea Dogs & Cats Home do not currently have a policy to import dogs ourselves, as the problem of unwanted dogs has not yet been solved in this country. However, we never refuse entry to a dog presented to us, so we have taken dogs from overseas in the past and rehomed them successfully. It is likely that we will receive more overseas dogs in the future, as holidaymakers often take pity on a particular dog and bring it home even if they cannot keep it themselves’
The dogs, named Albi, Ici and Futry, have been kept in isolation for two weeks following their arrival, to give them time to settle after their journey and allow for complete medical and behavioural assessments. During this time staff at the Home have been getting to know them and teaching them English commands. Animal Welfare Manager Laura Jenkins said: ‘All three are typical Romanian street dogs, medium sized cross-breeds who are very friendly with people and other dogs, so it should not be long before we find them great new homes’.