Over the past days and weeks we have come across posts or stories about how animals end up being treated in the cruelest manner, or even kept in small confined spaces. Many a time, these situations are remedied thanks to the hard work of Rosalind Agius and the team at the Association for Abandoned Animals.
Bay spoke to Rosalind Agius about what a typical day at the AAA is like, and about what the Association does when it is faced with harsh realities.
The AAA is a non-governmental organisation which works, on a daily basis, to help, and save abandoned dogs. Rosalind tells us that the days at the AAA are long days full of endless work, consisting of cleaning, feeding, medicating and taking sick dogs for vet checks or any surgeries that must be done.
Another long day full of endless work in the sanctuary – cleaning, feeding, medicating, the work is endless.Here are…
AAA operates a dog shelter, to provide a safe place for rescued dogs to live in, and where the dedicated volunteers can give them the much-needed love which they would need until they are re-homed. “We’ve come a long way since then,” Rosalind says, “all thanks to the helping hands of the amazing community and animal lovers that opened their hearts to our dog adoptions scheme and who are always ready to support us.”
In 2018, the AAA relocated to a newly refurbished Sanctuary in Birzebbugia, which gave its better facilities to serve the community and the rescued dogs.
We had to obviously speak of the harsh realities which Rosalind and her colleagues encounter on a daily basis. In fact, Rosalind tells us about a recent example of such realities, where the AAA immediately steps in to help – and which circled around a breeder from Zejtun who only bred these dogs for one single aim – that of making as much money as possible.
“These dogs were brought to the AAA in such a pitiful state, after they were confiscated by the Animal Welfare Department, as they were neglected,” she tells us.
“Two of the dogs were also blind and luckily enough they immediately took a liking to each other, so they are now together sharing a bed, their food, and beds. Unfortunately for the others, they had to be separated from each other as the only thing they did was fight with each other for all sorts of reasons, even if they were supplied with more than a bowl each for food and water. They act like this as they, unfortunately, had to compete with each other for everything, in their sad miserable past.”
There were also another 2 dogs which had a foreign microchip and this shows that these poor dogs were imported from abroad for the sole reason to be bred and live this disgusting life in the hands of this terrible human,” Rosalind tells us.
The question which follows, almost naturally, is about the enforcement, and where there is enough of it. Rosalind tells us that there is “some sort of enforcement,” adding that “unfortunately, it is not enough.”
“Laws must be changed, and stronger enforcement must be definitely put into practice, as the abandonment and abuse of dogs is somewhat of an ongoing situation, which has been going on for way too long. These culprits must be punished for their actions as otherwise without proper enforcement these unfortunate and sad situations will continue to increase. Something must really be done – the sooner the better – in the hope that we will have less of these harsh realities in the near future,” Rosalind said.
The AAA relies solely on donations, and here is how YOU can help:
By sending an sms on:
50617350 €2.33, 50618060 €4.66, 50618910 €6.99, 50619200 €11.66
Alternatively you can also choose to sponsor a dog for just €30 annually!
Rosalind tells us that the funds are used for all that would be needed to care for the dogs – food, medicine, surgeries and even ongoing treatment – as well as for the day-to-day running of the sanctuary which also includes water and electricity bills.
AND if you are 16 years or older, and have man’s best friend at heart, then you can also choose to become a volunteer, as volunteers are always needed. The running of the sanctuary is a great deal of work, especially when considering that the AAA Sanctuary is currently home to 80 dogs. AAA isopen daily till 2.30pm but the work must be done in the morning so “whoever can come over and give a helping hand, is more than welcome after 8am.” If you are interested, give a call to Rosalind on 79730921 for further information.
We asked Rosalind if she has one final appeal to animal owners. “Here at the AAA we will always continue to educate people – especially those who will be having a dog for the first time in their lives.”
Rosalind urges all those who would be looking into getting a dog, “to do their homework very well, since a dog is for life, and it is also a 15yr commitment.” She says that “there will also be vet bills to pay and most importantly keep in mind that dogs also need their quality time with their owners, especially if they are puppies – this means, time for training, socialising and walking, all of which are very important for the wellbeing and good behaviour of the dog or puppy.”
“Senior dogs are also so very wonderful dogs whose main scope is to please and love their new owner/family – even though they would be senior dogs, they will also learn anything you teach them, which means not only puppies can learn, but also senior dogs,” Rosalind says. This is why, “here at the AAA we also seek to promote adoption rather than buying a dog.
There are so many dogs in sanctuaries waiting for that special person/family they can shower with love and have that special place that they can call home, forever!”
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