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Cathy

Member Since 26 Apr 2011
Offline Last Active May 12 2011 02:41 PM
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Posts I've Made

In Topic: Barrel Dogs In Crete

27 April 2011 - 01:23 PM

Re Barrel dogs

These reforms, though welcome, do not go nearly far enough. Dogs are highly intelligent pack animals. It goes without saying that they need adequate food and shelter, but equally they need comanionship (human and/or canine), exercise and mental stimulation.

I have recently returned from a holiday in Crete. While walking in the countryside I saw many dogs tied up on short leashes, apparently guarding something although it was unclear what. My route took me past one young-looking dog twice. Although he was barking he was wagging his tail in a friendly way so on the second occasion I risked sitting down next to him and stroking his head. I'll never forget how delighted he seemed to recieve this human contact or how frantic he became when I had to walk away and leave him behind. At the time, although I could see that the dog had a poor quality of life, I assumed that his owner would collect him at the end of each long, boring day on guard duty and take him home. When I returned to England and read about the true horror of the lives of these poor dogs on the internet it broke my heart. According to what I read (and I would be absolutely delighted to be corrected if this is an exaggeration) these dogs spend their entire adult lives tied up in all weathers, the farmer only visiting to feed them a few times a week. Anyone who treated a dog in this manner in the UK would quite rightly have it taken away and could face a large fine or even prison sentence.

Yes, in Crete the landscapes are beautiful and the people are friendly (to humans...) but I doubt that I will be back as the plight of the barrel dogs upsets me too much. Things can only change if the Cretans are made aware of how badly this practice reflects on their culture and be persuaded that it has a negative impact on tourism. I know there is little I can do but I plan to make as many people as possible aware of this terrible situation.