We want to start this off by saying a huge THANK YOU to each and every one of you who volunteered to be a part of THE BIG FEED this past weekend.
We never could of imagined just how BIG the feed would be and without all your help and support we couldn't of done it without you.
We had 22 people who volunteered to join our feeding teams over the weekend and over the space of two days, Saturday and Sunday, we was able to feed over 300 dogs!
YES.... OVER THREE HUNDRED DOGS!
We are so happy we got to feed so many strays, but at the same time, this number makes us feel extremely sad. That is a huge number and we didn't even cover the whole island, so you can imagine just how many more are out there starving hungry, with no home or shelter, no family to look out for them. It's heartbreaking and overwhelming when you think of the scale of what we are up against.
We are so proud of what we achieved during The Big Feed but this proves that there is still much more work to do.
We asked each volunteer to document every dog they fed during The Big Feed by taking a photo or video of the dog, sending a location pin of where the dog was hanging around and if the dog was a female in heat, a male that needed neutering, or any minor or major injuries that needed treated. With this information we can now make a database and start to work our way through it by arranging sterilisations and veterinary care etc.
The barios we covered this weekend include:
The worst cases and highest number of stray dogs we documented were in Madiki and San Nicolas. We will do our best to focus on these areas first and give help to those in need.
The most common concerns we discovered over the weekend apart from malnutrition was lots of dogs with injuries such as limping, flea and tick infestations and many females in heat.
Spaying and neutering is so important. And here's why...
Top 10 reasons to spay or neuter your pet:
Your female pet will live a longer, healthier life. Spaying helps prevent uterine infections and breast cancer, which is fatal in about 50 percent of dogs and 90 percent of cats. Spaying your pet before her first heat offers the best protection from these diseases.
Neutering provides major health benefits for your male. Besides preventing unwanted litters, neutering your male companion prevents testicular cancer.
Your spayed female won't go into heat. While cycles can vary, female cats usually go into heat four to five days every three weeks during breeding season and most female dogs come into heat twice per year, or about every six months.
Your male dog won't want to roam away from home. An intact male will do just about anything to find a mate! That includes digging his way under the fence and making like Houdini to escape from the house. And once he's free to roam, he risks injury in traffic and fights with other males.
Your neutered male will be much better behaved. Neutered cats and dogs focus their attention on their human families. On the other hand, unneutered dogs and cats may mark their territory by spraying strong-smelling urine all over the house. Many aggression problems can be avoided by early neutering.
Spaying or neutering will NOT make your pet fat. Don’t use that old excuse! Lack of exercise and overfeeding will cause your pet to pack on the extra pounds-not neutering. Your pet will remain fit and trim as long as you continue to provide exercise and monitor food intake.
It is highly cost-effective. The cost of your pet's spay/neuter surgery is a lot less than the cost of having and caring for a litter. It also beats the cost of treatment when your unneutered cat or dog escapes and gets into fights with the neighborhood stray!
Spaying and neutering your pet is good for the community. Stray animals pose a real problem. They can cause car accidents, damage the local fauna and frighten children. Spaying and neutering packs a powerful punch in reducing the number of animals on the streets.
Your pet doesn't need to have a litter for your children to learn about the miracle of birth. Letting your pet produce offspring you have no intention of keeping is not a good lesson for your children-especially when so many unwanted animals end up in shelters. There are tons of books and videos available to teach your children about birth in a more responsible way.
Spaying and neutering helps fight pet overpopulation. Every year, millions of cats and dogs of all ages and breeds are euthanized or suffer as strays. These high numbers are the result of unplanned litters that could have been prevented by spaying or neutering.
During The Big Feed we also helped many dogs that belong to families. This year has been extremely tough on Aruba due to Coronavirus leaving many families out of work or on reduced salaries. Often in these situations the family pets are the first to suffer. Families can barely afford to feed themselves let alone their pet(s).
Many families reached out to us during the weekend and we gave them care packages with dog food whilst we were out on the streets feeding the strays.
If you are struggling during this time please don't feel ashamed or embarrassed to contact us and ask for help. We would much rather help you with a care package of dog food to get you through this tough time then see you kick your dog out on the street or leave your family pet in the cunucu/mondi to try and fend for themselves.
Overall The Big Feed was a huge success and we definitely helped more dogs than we anticipated. Our only downfall was that we did not have enough dog food to distribute to be able to feed more areas. This is due to lack of funding as we solely rely on donations to keep Luna Foundation operating.
Our hope is that we will be able to raise enough funds to now sterilise all the dogs we documented, be able to pay for veterinary care for those in need and we have enough to purchase more dog food so we can feed even more of these precious strays out on the streets.
We are truly thankful to each and every one of you who donates to our mission, volunteers to be a part of our movement and continues to support Luna Foundation.
We are their voices and together we will make a difference.
Please help us to raise awareness by sharing this blog with your friends and following us on social media to stay up to date with all the goings on behind the scenes at the safe haven, new upcoming projects and future events.
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