Making Happy Tails for Street Dogs in Rwanda

by Welfare for Animals Guild Rwanda
Making Happy Tails for Street Dogs in Rwanda
Making Happy Tails for Street Dogs in Rwanda
Making Happy Tails for Street Dogs in Rwanda
Making Happy Tails for Street Dogs in Rwanda
Making Happy Tails for Street Dogs in Rwanda
Making Happy Tails for Street Dogs in Rwanda
Making Happy Tails for Street Dogs in Rwanda
Making Happy Tails for Street Dogs in Rwanda
Making Happy Tails for Street Dogs in Rwanda
Making Happy Tails for Street Dogs in Rwanda
Making Happy Tails for Street Dogs in Rwanda
Making Happy Tails for Street Dogs in Rwanda
Making Happy Tails for Street Dogs in Rwanda
Making Happy Tails for Street Dogs in Rwanda
Making Happy Tails for Street Dogs in Rwanda
Making Happy Tails for Street Dogs in Rwanda
Making Happy Tails for Street Dogs in Rwanda
Making Happy Tails for Street Dogs in Rwanda
Making Happy Tails for Street Dogs in Rwanda
Making Happy Tails for Street Dogs in Rwanda
Making Happy Tails for Street Dogs in Rwanda
Making Happy Tails for Street Dogs in Rwanda
Paci in action!
Paci in action!

Happy holidays WAG family!

Just a quick update to fill you in on what's been going on in Kigali the last few months at WAG...

First some pupdates -

Remember Margot?  Rescued in dire shape almost one year ago ( with a maggot infected leg wound we initially thought would need to be amputated). She finally found a wonderful home with Tina in Gisenyi!  We've attached an at rescue and post adoption photo- truly a WAG dog we will never forget. Congrats Margot! Special thank you to Margot’s foster mom Darshana who hosted and loved her so well until adoption.

In other happy news, Yfke was adopted by her foster family.  Heart melting pic attached !

Unfortunately, as of late, WAG has been taking in more dogs that have previously had owners ( as opposed to stray or free roaming dogs). Abandoned dogs are more vulnerable on the streets of Kigali and often come in depressed and in rough shape.  Unlike street dogs who have some survival skills, abandoned dogs require urgent rescue.  We wanted to highlight a few of their stories...

WAG rescued Santa, an adult female dog who was left behind in Rwanda by her owner. Santa was chained outside with no shelter - in one of the heaviest rainy seasons Kigali has seen. Paci, WAG’s shelter manager, investigated the situation and brought Santa to our shelter. She was then diagnosed with severe pyometra -a uterine infection - which would have been fatal. Her uterus was removed and she spent several days at the clinic recovering. Now, Santa is fully recovered and is ready for her forever home! 

Maxy and Makasi

We were contacted about Maxy and Makasi by a couple who'd moved into a new house in Muhanga, a town an hour outside of Kigali. The previous tenants of the house had left behind their dogs - Maxy and Makasi - and Makasi had given birth to three puppies. We took Makasi and her three puppies into WAG first, but sadly two of the puppies passed away, likely because of a tick-borne disease causing anemia. The third puppy survived after a blood transfusion. Maxy then joined the WAG pack. He was emaciated and very nervous, and didn't eat for 2 days after his journey to the shelter. However he is now eating and putting on weight and both Makasi and Maxy are enjoying their new chapter of life as WAG dogs! 

Dexy

Dexy was found wandering the streets of a residential neighborhood. He was underweight but very friendly. He was neutered and leash trained so we initially assumed he had a home and was lost, and had been for some time given how thin he was. After doing a community investigation and posting on social media, no one came forward for Dexy. We don't know his past - whether he was left behind or abandoned by his owners, or whether he had escaped - but he is now part of the WAG pack and looking for his forever 

And lastly, on November 14, a mass vaccination campaign supported by Rwanda Biomedical Centre, Rwanda Agricultural and Animal Resources Board, and the UN Food and Agricultural Organisation, took place in four provinces in Rwanda. Over 650 dogs and cats were vaccinated during the one day event. WAG provided technical support at all four sites, and registered all dogs receiving vaccinations with the Global Alliance for Rabies Control (GARC) dog registration app; the first time the GARC app was used in Rwanda. 

In January 2023, the national rabies elimination plan will be validated. WAG will advocate for the introduction of the GARC app across Rwanda for local animal resources officers to record dog ownership and vaccination and sterilization status, helping WAG and other partners get a better understanding of the dog population and challenges. WAG’s involvement in the national rabies elimination plan will ensure dog welfare will be advocated for on a national platform. 

Before signing out for the new year, we wanted to give a huge thank you to all of our supporters. Since joining the GlobalGiving platform, WAG has been able to operate in a sustainable way that’s previously not been possible. Thanks to our monthly givers we can count on reliable income to continue to feed, rescue, rehabilitate and rehome with confidence and it’s been GAME CHANGING. 

Happy holidays, merry everything!

We love you.

Fran & the WAG team

Margot at intake
Margot at intake
Margot at adoption- a miracle!
Margot at adoption- a miracle!
We love a foster fail
We love a foster fail
Maxy looking very depressed at rescue
Maxy looking very depressed at rescue
Maxy finally eats after 2 days of refusing food!
Maxy finally eats after 2 days of refusing food!
Dexy
Dexy
Richard speaking to the community
Richard speaking to the community
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Maxi
Maxi

Hello friend of WAG!

As the wet season starts up in Rwanda, it is raining cats and dogs in Kigali. We love highlighting rescue and adoption stories in these quarterly updates,  but this time we’re going to switch things up and  focus on community outreach efforts. It’s been an extra busy season of community support and we wanted to share a bit on this important aspect of our work.

Community outreach can take many forms but WAG regularly conducts community visits when we are notified about  dogs who are in need of our help.  In particular, over the past few months, Paci, WAG’s shelter manager, has been supporting dog owners who need advice on how to care for their dogs properly.  Here are three examples from  just the past 3 months:

  • Paci investigated two dogs living in a rural area in Nyamirambo on the outskirts of Kigali which we were alerted to. The two dogs live on a farm and have an owner, but the owner wasn’t able to afford vaccinations, deworming or sterilisations and the dogs were in poor condition. WAG is sterilising, vaccinating and deworming both dogs (male and female) and providing education to the dog owner about basic dog care, including information on what to feed the dogs and to always provide fresh drinking water.
  • Paci also investigated a dog who was reported to have been put on the street by their owner who no longer wanted her in Kimironko, Kigali. Paci did a community investigation, and through that investigation found another family in the community who were willing to adopt the dog, who they named Maxi. WAG sponsored the spay, vaccinations and deworming of Maxi, and Paci is in touch with the family to provide ongoing advice and support. 
  • In another case, a stray female dog was taken in from the street in Remera, Kigali, by a kind community member, who initially contacted WAG in the hope that WAG would take the dog, however when Paci went to do a behaviour assessment, he decided to keep the dog. He sought advice from Paci about how to care for her, and as with other cases, WAG has sponsored the spay, vaccinations and deworming of the dog, as well as providing advice.  

A few quick other updates...

-In our last report we mentioned the two research studies WAG team members are conducting. These studies  (the first of their kind in Rwanda), are looking into whether dog owners follow basic practices of responsible dog ownership, and will inform future guidelines and policy on dog ownership in Rwanda. Data is currently being analyzed and results will be shared in the next report. Stay tuned!

- Paci our shelter manager got married! 

- Lots of adoptions and a very happy pack of rescues at the shelter! We've also added some much needed foster homes to our network. I am including some photos so you can see the faces your support is current helping.

With love and gratitude,

WAG

 

Remera Dog- Community visit
Remera Dog- Community visit
Paci and Nyamirambo dog - Community visit
Paci and Nyamirambo dog - Community visit
Happy tails at the shelter space
Happy tails at the shelter space
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Foster home living at it's best
Foster home living at it's best

Hello friend!

It's time for another quarterly update and we have some awesome news to share.

As you know, most of our day-to-day revolves around rescue, care and rehoming dogs, but WAG team members are currently running two exciting dog-related research studies. One seeks to get a better understanding of the number of dogs in Kigali and the rate of dog ownership, as well as the demographics of the dog population, including vaccination status. This project is currently in the data analysis stage and is the first study in Rwanda that has sought to find out the number of dogs in Kigali. The second study investigates the knowledge, attitudes and practices of responsible dog ownership amongst dog owners in Kigali. Data collection for this study will start next month, and it is hoped that the findings will inform dog ownership policy in Rwanda. We are super proud of our team and enthusiastic about how this information will help inform decision-making and plans for WAG's growth as well as shed light on the importance of responsible dog ownership for dog welfare and public health.

The constant flow of dogs in and out of the shelter continues. We are currently recruiting new foster homes (tell your dog-loving Kigali friends!). While there have been lots of forever homes found, unfortunately, adoptions are still not happening as frequently as we would like and we are intaking dogs on an emergency-only basis. 

Every dog in our care has a story, but we find Gentille's to be especially special and want to share. In early January we received community reports about a friendly dog who was tied to a tree in Nytaturama. When Paci went to investigate, local authorities had decided to let him free. When we went to retrieve him, we couldn't find him. A few weeks later, a different person notified us of the same dog with reports of his abuse. Paci went again, this time he found him but Gentille ran away scared and wounded. We continued searching for weeks. In early April a volunteer was contacted about a dog who showed up in her compound. When we went to investigate, we discovered it was none other than Gentille!  Although very timid at intake,  he has found safety at WAG and is learning to trust again. Gentille loves to play, being with other dogs and is very sweet.  Gentille's story was months in the making and we're so glad he is on his way to finding a forever home to love and cherish him.

And finally, our shelter manager Paci is getting married! We're thrilled for Pacifique as he starts this next chapter and know that many of our supporters are also fans/friends of this remarkable human. Congratulations Paci! 

Thanks for your continued support- it really is the only reason we can do what we do!

With love and grattiude,

WAG

Gentille
Gentille
Paci and his fiance
Paci and his fiance
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Mama Zeus' puppies
Mama Zeus' puppies

Hello friends of WAG!

We hope everyone had a wonderful holiday season and 2022 is off to a great start. It's been several months since we launched our GlobalGiving page, and it's been a game changer for our tiny organization.  Whether you made a one off donation to our initial campaign, became a reoccurring donor or are just following along on our page, we want to start our very first report with a THANK YOU!  Despite a stressful last few months, we are so encouraged with continued financial support made possible through this platform. We can't say it enough, without you, there would be no WAG!

Things have been busy in Kigali! We wanted to highlight just a couple happy endings and give some quick updates:

*Through a targeted fundraiser, in December we were able to dedicate over 1000$ towards mental health and enrichment items for our dogs!  Much needed collars, toys, high quality treats  are on their way to Rwanda, with other items being purchased locally. Tails are wagging! These types of items are often low priority on our budget. It was a huge deal to be able invest specifically in dog-joy!

*We have had several new rescue intakes! Margot might be one of our most memorable. This puppy was found lying in a ditch ( for over a week!) after being hit by a car.  At rescue, she was on the verge of death, was incredibly malnourished and weak, and had severe wounds to her front legs. We initially thought she might not make it, and if she did, she'd need her front leg amputated. However, after a couple of weeks of hospitalisation and intensive care, she was well enough to be taken for x-rays, where we discovered that the bones in her leg were already fusing and the muscle and skin around her leg was growing back. Margot is the sweetest pup and has recently been given the green light for adoption. She is waiting (while getting lots of love and enjoying life) for the perfect family.

Another special rescue was mama Zeus and her 7 newborn puppies. At the time of writing, 2 of these cuties have already been homed. Zeus is the most gentle dog (we call her mouse because she is tiny yet has massive eyes). She was living alone in a compound (heavily pregnant) when new tenants moved in. As Paci was arriving to do a behaviour assessment she started delivering her puppies! Although they all got sick soon after intake,  everyone has recovered and keep us entertained with their puppy antics.They are seriously adorable.

*While adoptions have been slow, some amazing forever homes have been found.  Congrats to each  new forever family! Attached are just a few photos of a handful of those matches.

*We are currently at maximum capacity with every single kennel full at our pilot shelter space. We remain hopeful that despite rising COVID case counts and limited volunteers, adoptions will pick up in the new year and allow us to continue to take even more dogs into our care. We have a wait list and have been prioritizing urgent cases ( injured dogs, pregnant females and puppies) but the needs remain greater than our current capacity. Just today with 2 of Zeus' pups headed home, we were able to take in one more puppy found alone.

We will be in touch again in a few months with another update.

Until then, stay safe. We hope wherever you find yourself in these uncertain times, there is a dog nearby.

With gratitude on behalf of the WAG team,
Frances Klinck

Margot
Margot
Margot feeling much better
Margot feeling much better
Mama Zeus
Mama Zeus
Forever home found
Forever home found
Living the good life
Living the good life
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Organization Information

Welfare for Animals Guild Rwanda

Location: Kigali, Gasabo - Rwanda
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WAG Rwanda
Kigali, Gasabo Rwanda
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