MY RESCUE TRIP TO MALAGA SPAIN, SPRING 2013
Part 1 - Galgos en Familia, Alhaurin de la Torre, Malaga Spain
Telma Shaw - GRIN
April 25 - May 5, 2013. I spent 10 days in southern Spain, Malaga area, to visit two of the shelters that GRIN supports and to bring back yet two more wonderful Galgos to the U.S. It was once again an amazing trip and wonderful time seeing my friends and coming along with them on their day to day rescue work. As usual, it was a whirlwind of activity. Right off the plane I was met by Vera Thorenaar of Galgos en Family www.galgosenfamilia.org who recently moved into a new shelter building a few months ago after two years at the one I visited last fall. The new shelter is great as it has everything needed. Inside outside kennels, quarantine area, grooming bathing area, large turnout area and even a washing machine!
She has a dedicated group of volunteers who have morning and evening duties each day and lots of time is spent with the Galgos socializing..what a great setup for rescue work!
My first day in Spain we went to pick up a poor galgo who unfortunately was fighting for his life due to illness as he had been on the streets in a lamentable condition for many months. He was at the vets on IV but unfortunately did not make it and the reality of the situation just hit me straight away. It broke our hearts...So many beautiful Galgos abandoned, in need and without these amazing people there would be no chance for them. Maybe Attilla did not make it but many others are now thriving at GEF shelter and for that my spirits were lifted.
Later that day I met the two beautiful galgas who I was bringing back to New York. Laika a playful sweet girl and Dala who I met last October when Vera took me to the kill station to get two galgas out of there. One was Dala and how different she looked now! She had transformed from an emaciated limping little girl to a happy healthy playful galga with a funny nature now with a wonderful life ahead of her. It was so awesome to watch them run and play in this field before their long journey!
On the Sunday after I arrived, Vera organized a special day for the shelter volunteers as well. They planned a walk with the shelter dogs on the beach in Torremolinos. What a production!! Getting all the dogs ready for their trip in the volunteers cars, who goes with who, which two dogs walk well together etc etc..finally we were off..OK the weather played a few tricks..rain and wind, but in the end the sun shined. I had to seek shelter in our car during the rain as I was coming down with a bug, but when the sun came out I walked with a beautiful galgo named Pino on the beach and we had a nice coffee together at a beachside café until the others caught up.
We then met at Veras home for a lunch with the volunteers and a meeting about the shelter and procedures for the duties and proper daily maintenance..there were about 30 people in total..a wonderful engergetic and happy group of galgo and podenco lovers!! I sure felt at home!!
With all the positive people now dedicated to helping Galgos en Familia, there is progress that I can see amongst the Spanish reaching out to their own, telling them about the atrocities that these sweet innocent hunting dogs endure at the hands of the hunters. More and more dog lovers in Spain are reaching out to the galgos and the podencos. More adotptions within Spain and that is a start. Change is slow but there is change and that is the hope and what we work for. We can't save every life but we can change the life of those that are lucky enough to find their way to the shelters like Vera's Galgos en Familia! Visitors Welcomed!!
PART II of my trip to Spain and the time I spent with 112Carlotagalgos coming soon. and PART III will be the anatomy of a transport. People often ask how it is all arranged so I will show with pictures how GRIN and others accomplish these crazy, complicated and rewarding transports to get a few dogs to the states! Stay tuned..