January 27, 2022

Twenty six thousand - what's in a number?

Tuesday 25th January, 2021

What's in a number?When the number is 26,000 and the place is ACE-Shin that number represents 26,000 lives rescued and 26,000 golden baskets. It represents 26,000 poor souls saved from neglect, torture, cruelty, misery and abandonment. It represents 26,000 forever homes and a happy, secure future for each one. 

Of course 26,000 is not an exact number because since arriving at that total, many more of our darlings will have been re-homed. And of course there are still the darlings waiting for a home and the rescues continue, with more arriving daily. Our work is never done, however much we may pray that our help would no longer be needed. However much we may wish that there be no more cruelty, no more animals abandoned to their fate. For as long as the indifference and cruelty continues, we'll be there.

I sponsored my first dog, Enzio, more than twelve years ago, and my first visit to the Refugio was a few years later in 2011. I have been so privileged to know and write about some of the wonderful dogs who found their golden baskets. Here are just a few of them - they have all touched my heart in different ways.

Enzio, now Vasco

I spent hours looking at the database, trying to choose a dog to sponsor. The short list ran to about 50! I had to choose and chose Enzio, mainly because he looked so terrified, so lost. After a few years, on my first visit I met him. Well I sort of met him - the closest I could approach was several metres distant and all I could do was talk to him softly. The slightest movement had him slinking off to hide, shaking all over. The following year it was only marginally better and then, one day, I received and email saying 'Enzio is home'. Enzio's new family called him Vasco and his mistress says he reminds her of a 'reserved and serious English gentleman'. He is no longer scared. He is happy. The link below brings you to an earlier post with his full story.


Enzio, then

Enzio/Vasco at home with one of his adopted brothers

Vasco, a very relaxed 'English Gentleman'


She touched all our hearts, our little fatty, Bombadonneke. When I first saw her she was in a run with other dogs who were bullying her. Desperate to escape she managed to squeeze her fat little tummy under the wire. Seeing her distress, Fabienne took her home to foster. Where it transpired that the poor small thing was pregnant; an emergency Caesarean reveal a very large puppy, sadly dead. Once Bomba had recovered Fabienne put her on a diet of green beans, which wasn't easy because Bomba loved her food. But in time the little darling lost 6 kilos. It was a bitter sweet day when we learnt she had been adopted, we loved her so much but we wanted her to be happy. And she is. Her name is now Lola and her owners adore her, and she adores them too. Below is a link to an earlier post, when she was about to leave for her new home.

Before the great green bean diet

About to set out for her forever home

Slim and so happy with her new owners


Beautiful Steven.  Found wandering all alone in someone’s garden but now safe in the Refugio. Fabienne describes him as ‘the apple of our eye’.  I loved him when I met him – everyone loves this elegant and charming fellow and he loves them. Such an affectionate boy. Dogs are crazy about him too. Steven was in the Refugio for a long time; he made everyone happy but he so longed for his very own home and his very own boss. And then it came, what we'd all been longing for. Steven was adopted and now lives in Denmark - his very own home at last. .... just look at this happy boy in the pictures below. 

All dressed up and ready to fly to Denmark

Happy Steven playing chase with his new friend

Not just handsome, not just beautiful but the most loving, affectionate dog you could ever meet.

More happy endings to follow!

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