THE LAIKA FUND FOR STREET DOGS
A non profit - no borders organization, dedicated to helping the world's strays - one dog at a time.
The Laika Fund for Street Dogs began with a vision of being able to assist individual rescuers who are frontline help for these dogs, but with little in the way of support or resources where they are, and to rehome a small number of these dogs to loving families in Canada each year. We feel that together our combination of skills and strengths will build us into an efficient and effective organization. We operate with three directors, plus a small number of coordinators in the countries that are our main areas of operation, Romania, Kosovo, India, Thailand, and Belize, (as well as the UK for fostering/rehoming some of the dogs) and a small but amazing group of volunteers who assist with fostering, transport, and networking. The Laika Fund for Street Dogs is 100% volunteer run.
As The Laika Fund grows and gains support, we will be helping to provide resources to a small number of rescuers in our countries of operation, (as well as northern communities here in Ontario) who are front line workers with street dogs. We are "no borders" in our approach, believing that a dog in need should not go without help because of geography or logistics. Dogs in many countries would have virtually no chance of adoption, if not placed in countries like Canada and the UK, and shelters can be literal places of horror, full of death, disease, cruelty, filth, neglect, and starvation, with dogs existing by feeding on other dogs who have died. In many countries, there is little to no support or resources for people doing this kind of work. We advocate trap/neuter/release programs, which when implemented properly, and combined with vaccination programs, and education to the public about responsible dog ownership and humane treatment of strays, are the ONLY effective method of reducing numbers of strays long term. Removing large numbers of dogs, either by culling or for adoption (impossible given the numbers) has never worked, and will never work, as the remaining dogs simply breed and the numbers rebound quickly, perpetuating the vicious circle. TNR programs work because the dogs hold territory, but do not reproduce, reducing numbers of puppies born, and therefore eliminating much suffering. It also means that the remaining dogs are healthier and better able to survive.
In some cases, dogs suitable for adoption will be posted on our adoptable dogs page. Dogs are spayed/neutered, vaccinated, blood tested, and health checked before departure to Canada. They are fostered and placed for adoption with thorough application and screening procedures, and LF remains available to adopters and the dogs for support, for the lifetime of that animal. If for any reason during the life of the animal, an adopter is unable, or unwilling to keep him or her, they are contracturally obligated to inform LF, so that we may either screen a new adopter, or take the animal in for fostering/rehoming.
In some cases, the most cost effective way of transporting the dogs intercontinentally, is with one person flying to a destination, and returning with three dogs as excess baggage. In other cases, air cargo may be used, and if you are planning a trip to any of the countries in which we operate, and would be willing to act as a flight volunteer, please contact us at: firstname.lastname@example.org
HOW THE NAME WAS CHOSEN
On a September 2013 trip to Romania to bring three of a group of dogs Rebecca was helping get to Canada, she witnessed a heartbreaking number of strays on the streets, and on her last afternoon there, one in particular caught her attention - a smaller girl limping on three legs. Like the others, she was hungry, thin, cold, wet and afraid, but only being able to walk on three legs, she would have a much more difficult time competing for what little food would be available, and certainly wouldn't be able to avoid dogcatchers. At this point Rebecca did not know anyone in Bucharest, so got online to find help. After receiving a name and number to call, and being told help was on the way, she went outside and located the dog, waiting several hours in the dark with her wrapped inside a sweatshirt, in freezing cold rain and high winds that knocked out power to that section of the city, until they were both soaked and frozen, for help that never did come. After midnight, some of the hotel staff kindly found a basement maintenance room to put her in for the night, as they realized Rebecca would not leave her. She curled up on a jacket put there for her, and was still lying there in the morning when Rebecca's friends arrived from Bacau. (Probably the first warm dry night she'd had in awhile) The hotel guards had said they called her "Laika", after the Russian stray that had been trained in the late 1950's for a mission in space which ultimately killed her. Rebecca decided at that moment that this Laika would have a happier ending, and that night sitting holding and talking to her, told her that her name would be the name of the rescue she had been wanting to start. Laika stayed fro two months with rescue friends in Bacau, and now lives in Canada with the Ashworth family.
"Saving one dog won't change the world, but surely for that one dog, the world will change forever."
~ Share - spreading the word is vital to both finding supporters for what we do, and fosters and adopters for the dogs. Please help by sharing the links to our website, Facebook page, and Twitter page.
~ Foster - we are in need of safe foster homes in Ontario, ideally within a two to three hour radius of Toronto. If you would like more information on becoming a foster for the Laika Fund, please email us at email@example.com
~Donate- in addition to the individual fundraisers for each dog we are working on bringing to Canada, we need to build a general fund for expenses such as travelling to do home visits for those interested in fostering or adopting, vet costs for dogs in foster, and in order to begin providing some support to individuals we work with, who are feeding and caring for dogs both on the streets and in foster.
~Fundraise- we welcome ideas for fundraising to add to the general fund, or sponsor one dog or group of dogs.