How Far Would You Go For a Kiss?

Isn’t this a great title?  But just how far would you go?  I came across a simply amazing rescue plan for a race in saving animals around the world and had to share this with everyone as it strongly relates to our work here at Aanifeira in Portugal.

Laura Simpson, is a devoted animal advocate who was United States Director of the World Society for the Protection of Animals where she specialized in educating Americans about the needs of animals across the globe.  She founded The Great Animal Rescue Chase, a site providing a window to the world in an international race to save the lives of one million animals

Those who have saved an animal or need encouragement to do so, are invited to showcase their stories with photos on The Great Animal Rescue Chase site.  The stories that I have seen are absolutely amazing and the rescuers deserve all the credit that is due to them. 

I put up our Aanifeira story of “One Sunny Day” about our rescuing little blind Sunny after he had been cruelly abandoned, with one eye hanging from the socket, at our front gates.    

The site also provides “a rescuers code” which safeguards not only the well being of all the animals targeted in the race but also the welfare of the rescuers themselves.

Laura also founded The Harmony Fund which “has a singular mission to rescue the animals others deem “unreachable”.  Sixteen very courageous animal protection programs around the world will warm your heart and want to set you on your own mission to start a similar project in your own country.

Finally, Laura’s 1,000 Mile Kiss Project: A Dog Rescue, where a group of 17 homeless dogs from a zero-adoption facility in Louisiana (the public are prohibited from adopting – how unbelievable is that!) are given the second chance of a lifetime and travel across the U.S. by truck to a receiving shelter in Cape Cod where they receive veterinary care and await adoption.  Their first kiss is received from their new owners after this 1,000 mile journey from death row to happiness.   This rescue program is just amazing and, even better, is ongoing.  If this doesn’t give you goosebumps then what will!

What I have learnt from my very little involvement in this amazing project is that every time we save an animal we are heroes and in taking Laura’s words for our work here let’s continue to be heroes and:- 

  • Stop the car and check the animal laying by the side of the road – it might still be alive;
  • Pull over and give food and water to animal in poor condition.  Check if it needs veterinary assistance;
  • Call the authorities if you see an animal being mistreated or kept in poor conditions;
  • Take in the old stray cat on a cold winter’s day;
  • Return to the place where you have seen the dog with the broken leg.  Take it in to get help;
  • Gently remove or pick up the dog wandering in the middle of traffic on a main road and give it assistance;
  • Be late for work and not worry about it, if you are saving a life;
  • Get fur on the back seat of your car.

and as Laura says “10 years from now you’ll still be talking about the day you saved a life“!

Thank you Laura for these words of wisdom.  How many times has the above happened to me and my fellow colleagues at Aanifeira.  We so much need to hear words of encouragement instead of being laughed at or ridiculed.  I am so proud of what we have done and we will continue to do it for the rest our lives!

About Aanifeira

Aanifeira – Associação dos Amigos dos Animais de Santa Maria da Feira is a non-profit/ no-kill organization with around 400 abandoned dogs and a small amount of cats in its care.
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