This is a grass roots effort. A small family based shelter in Bulgaria needs help. With no flashy logos or company anything, with no salaries or perks, Steve and Ingrid have dedicated their lives to rescuing, protecting, healing and re-homing as many neglected animals as possible. In their simple and humble home, they have filled all available space with dozens of animals, as a temporary stopping point to better lives in loving families. I was personally touched and deeply moved by the knowledge of what these people and their small group of helpers are doing against massive odds. It is not unheard of for dog rescue workers to receive physical abuse from authorities in some places, and often the scenes being met with are grim and upsetting. Every single penny of royalty from the sale of this poetry book will be given to help continue this act of total selflessness and kindness. To donate a poem or to buy a copy of the book would be a massive gesture of your own intentions and care for these people and the lives they protect.
A few notes from Ingrid Hughes, co-founding care giver at the sanctuary may help explain....
We visit the municipality shelters and take food and try to find foster homes or take them ourselves if we can. We recently removed a blind dog (Stevie) from the shelter and the 'Blind Dog Rescue' in the UK found a great home for him. We took home another blind dog last week from the shelter, (Denzel) who was so scared but with patience and love we will turn him around, and find him a good home too. We visit the town chain guard dogs and feed them, front line and worm them, take them food as often as we can. They are outside with a kennel on a chain, no life really and they all love to be stroked and touched. Not really guard dogs at all! We put a warm blanket into their kennels in the winter, and make sure they always have water in the summer. You will see photos of the shelter, concentration camps for homeless and abandoned dogs. Also I have photos of our chain dogs and the dog houses Steve makes for them if they don't have one. Steve also makes kennels for the shelter dogs for each cold pen they only have a wooden pallet to sleep on. You will also see photos of this. Some don't make it and its always hard to loose one, but we give everything to them to get them well and in good homes. We have sold our motor home, gold jewellery, anything of value to pay the vet to heal our rescues. We have found new born kittens and bottle fed them until they were old enough to feed themselves. Some of these kittens didn't make it and its always so painful to loose one after you have fed and nursed them every two hours, over weeks, but we never turn away from any animal in distress. One funny story, I sent Steve to our village shop last year, the snow was so deep we couldn't drive, he returned with a tiny ginger kitten, half frozen to death. No bread!! but a sick kitten. Today Reuben our Ginger cat is big and fat and healthy, but not quite right in the head! not quite the 'full ticket' ..........as Steve said 10p short of a £1 ha ha We have now 19 cats and 12 dogs to feed and care for, some we will keep forever, two old Pekinese dogs, one 15 yrs and blind, another 12 ys old, both abandoned by their owners onto the streets......... A kitten called 'Stumper' we found last summer, a tiny scrap with a leg missing, a dog perhaps bit it off.........he will always be 'our special boy' and live with us.
This morning I received a cry for help from a Bulgarian lady, she has found a mother dog with 6 puppies living rough outside. Its -8 at night here, freezing temps! and they wont survive for long outside, so I have been busy arranging them to travel to a doggie hotel for now and I will try and find a foster home for them later. Then later this morning I received a message from a english lady who also lives here in BG she answered my plea for help to take two sweet female dogs out of the city shelter, she has agreed to foster the two dogs if I pay for all her costs. I will also arrange transport to get the dogs taken to her. This is what I do every day..........and Im happy to help anyone save a dogs life, but this is all from our small income, so you can see why we struggle? Every penny will help me to help more dogs and cats find homes.