Monthly news May

1-31 May

Medical treatments, vet visits, overseas adoption and foster care – May was as busy as ever. Whilst running low on funds, the Zero Strays team has tried their best to make their own funds and those of our supporters reach as many stray cats and dogs as possible – to minimise suffering (medical treatments, foster care, adoptions) and to reduce the number of animals having to face a life on the street (sterilisation).

This month’s news contains a longer text about our foster care system, and at the bottom, one of our favourite success stories of lovely little blind puppy Jara who found her perfect dog home with Martina Graf in Munich. 

Don’t forget to check out our ‘Up for adoption’ section: https://www.zerostraysgeorgia.org/up-for-adoption/ 

If you’d like to know more, please email us on zerostraysgeorgia@gmail.com

Gimli was saved from the streets of Svaneti
Gimli at the airport
Rusudan and Gimli
Mariam and Gimli
Gimli taking off

Gimli saved from the Svaneti highway traveled to Belgium. He was found by our team members Natia and Rusudan on the way to Zugdidi. He was abandoned in the Middle of Nowhere, a small, very scared dog, with zero chance of survival.

He was fostered and prepared for adoption and Rusudan found him a home in Belgium, A Georgian couple adopted him.

Parasite treatments

Many of the strays in Georgia suffer from a range of diseases caused by parasites. We continuously provide medical treatments to alleviate the suffering caused by parasites. This month we focused on strays in  Zugdidi.

Stray cat receiving urgent care and sterilisation
Stray kitten getting a back leg amputated & being sterlised
Vethealth vet George Tchurgulia successfully performed the surgery and the cat is now in foster care
Pregnant stray sterilised in Zugdidi

This little girl was sterilised on 27th May in Zugdidi by Vethealth vet George Tchurgulia. Every month, we sterilise strays and pets of families who cannot afford to pay for it themselves, particularly in the area in and around Zugdidi where no large organisations are currently active. We use two clinics in Zugdidi: George Tchurgulia at Vethealth and Emzar Chachua, which assist us in carrying out the sterilisations at a cost of 100 GEL per stray.

Breast cancer patient
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Phoebe has mammary gland tumours and need to have all of her breasts removed. She was dumped right after giving birth to puppies and her breasts are still full of milk. However, Phoebe also has severe heart issues that are currently being treated before she can have surgery. 

Mikesh keeps fighting

Mikesh has anemia and his surgery has also been postponed as he goes through two more weeks of treatment.

Vet visits for Sakura and Fly
Sakura is receiving liver and anemia treatments following a long battle with ehrlichiosis and babesiosis.
Fly has ascites and needs to have fluid drained from her abdomen.
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Fly and Sakura post-treatments at the clinic
Our foster homes

Our 43 foster dogs live with local village families in the area around Zugdidi. In an environment where poverty is adamant and animal welfare issues an every day occurrence, teaming up with local families to foster strays until they find their own forever home is a win-win for everyone involved. The foster dogs get to stay in a safe, rural environment and cared for by lovely locals who benefit from the foster fee the Zero Strays Team pay them every month. One month of foster care is 50 euro per dog and includes food, care, a wash every now and then and basic medical supplies (deworming etc.). That means we have to cover 2 150 euro per month in foster fees. Mariam spends most of her salary on this, and the rest of the team try to chip in with whatever they can every month. Any support towards covering this 2 150 euro expense is always much appreciated! Don’t forget to check out the lovely little strays who are looking for a new home to call their own!

Jara's success story and her new life in Munich
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Jara’s owner Martina Graf tells us:  “It was clear to me that when I got a dog, I wanted to give a new home to a dog that hadn’t had it easy in life. Be it because of their age or a disability.
So I became aware of Jara in mid-October 2023 through a german dog rescue organization. Jara has been blind since birth, she was born without eyes.

The association posted a picture of her rescue on Instragram and I immediately knew I wanted to give her a new home. This little sweetheart had already suffered so much pain. I commented on the post and the organization contacted me directly the next day.

After it was clear that I was going to adopt Jara, Mariam contacted me. Mariam is an incredible person who not only took good care of Jara and looked after her, she also takes care of many other street dogs and cats in Georgia and gives a voice to the voiceless.

Mariam kept sending me updates, pictures and videos of Jara and answered all my questions with great patience. She took care of all the necessary documents, had the required examinations and vaccinations carried out and organized a flight sponsor to accompany Jara from Georgia to Germany.

After arriving in Germany, Jara quickly settled into her new life. She is a real sweetheart and everyone loves her. Despite her blindness, she loves to play with her ball and loves to play fetch with other dogs. If you don’t know that she is blind, you wouldn’t know it, Jara is full of life and positive energy.

Next week we will start our sniffing course at the dog school and in about 6 weeks we will start with mantrailing.

I can only encourage everyone to give a dog or cat from Georgia a chance at a loving home. I would especially like to encourage others to adopt a dog or cat with a handicap. They have so much love to give and unfortunately far too seldom a chance, they may look different, but they have all the more love to give.”

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